Oddsmakers Spot Slumping Kings Many Points Hosting Thunder

OKC Thunder

Jay Pryce

Tuesday, November 7, 2017 1:00 PM GMT

Tuesday, Nov. 7, 2017 1:00 PM GMT

The Kings are spotted double digits (+10) on the NBA oddsboard at Golden 1 Center for just the seventh time in the last nine years as they host the slow-starting Oklahoma City Thunder Tuesday night (10 p.m. ET). Best bet and preview this way.

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Free NBA Pick: Under 205.5Best Line Offered: at Pinnacle Oklahoma City Thunder (-10) vs Sacramento Kings Kings Young, Desperate For Scoring

Are the Kings ready to move on from their shooting woes? They registered a .592 effective field-goal rate in a 108-99 loss at Detroit on Saturday night, their first contest draining better than 48 percent from the field. Sacramento puts up a lowly 93.8 points per game. Only the Bulls (91.9) average fewer in the league. The Kings are 1-8 SU and 2-6-1 ATS to begin the season, dropping seven straight.

Head coach Dave Joerger is desperately seeking a go-to scorer. Since trading away DeMarcus Cousins last February, the team has seen just two players register 30 points or more in a game: Skal Labissiere (32) and Buddy Hield (30), both against the Suns. Hield, the sixth overall pick in the 2016 NBA Draft, was dropped from the first team for the Pistons matchup. The promising sharp-shooting guard is third on the team in scoring with 11.3 points per game, hitting just 36 percent from the field, and 26 percent from behind the arc.

Sacramento is the most inexperienced team in the league with three of five starters younger than 23-years old. Joerger is constantly shuffling his lineups looking for some kind of spark. The starting five tonight will likely be comprised of veteran George Hill and Garrett Temple in the backcourt with Bogdan Bogdanovic, Zach Randolph, and Willie Cauley-Stein operating the paint. Rookie point guard De’Aaron Fox leads the Kings in scoring with 12.7 points in 27.0 minutes per game.

 

Thunder Defense Rolling, Offense Bland

The Thunder, third favorites (+1100 at 5Dimes) to claim the Western Conference championship prior to the season, are just 4-5 SU to begin the year, still ironing out the kinks among the new faces and subsequent player rotations. Offensively, the group is not living up to expectations, averaging a pedestrian 104.3 points per game. Paul George (21.0), Carmelo Anthony (20.6) and Russell Westbrook (20.1) each put up better than 20 points per game, but the team’s inability to get to the charity stripe is a big reason why the total is down. OKC averages 19.1 free-throw attempts (25th in the NBA), making 13.9 a visit (25th).

The Thunder defense is booming, however. It ranks second in the NBA in points allowed per game (97.1), first in points yielded in the paint (37.6), and fifth in blocks (4.0). Versatile center Steven Adams protects the rim, while Paul George and All-Defensive Second Teamer Andre Roberson harass the perimeter.

Anthony is expected to miss the Sacramento meeting after receiving a puzzling flagrant 2 foul on Sunday night. The 10-time All-Star clipped Jusuk Nurkic in the jaw with his elbow while driving for a layup. NBA officials can downgrade or rescind flagrants retroactively, but the league has not been in touch with OKC as of Monday night.

Pick

Pick ‘under’ 205.5 for the game total. Sacramento plays at the slowest pace in the league with a 94.9 rating, unable to generate any transition basketball despite many young speedy players. Both teams also present some strong defensive matchups versus key scorers. George will frustrate Bogdanovich for OKC, while Hill can give Westbrook one of his tougher challenges. Each team ranks above average at protecting the rim with Adams and Cauley-Stein guarding. Perimeter play will be the flavor tonight. Expect one, if not both, to stay under the century mark. 

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