Sadly, Thursday night is the final regular-season meeting between the Oklahoma City Thunder and Golden State Warriors, who can tie the NBA record for longest home winning streak with a victory. If you are a fan of the NBA, root for the Thunder to fall to the No. 4 seed in the West by the end of the season (Clippers could pass them). Because that would mean an expected showdown with the Warriors in the Western Conference semifinals. If OKC stays at No. 3, it wouldn't be favored to get past No. 2 San Antonio in the West semis. Any true NBA fan should want to see the Warriors have to get past both the Thunder and Spurs -- no offense to Clippers --- on the way back to the NBA Finals if they are truly to be considered the best single-season team of all time. Might Thursday also be the final time that Thunder star Kevin Durant plays in Oakland not as a member of the Warriors? There have been rumors that he will join Golden State in free agency if he does leave OKC.
Suns at Heat (-13, 205.5)
Phoenix didn't bother showing up in Tuesday's 126-92 loss at Charlotte; the Suns' biggest deficit was 43 points. This is not an NBA team right now. It was Phoenix's 16th straight road loss and, incredibly, 11th in a row by double digits. Phoenix dropped to 4-24 on the road and moved within one of tying the team's 42-year-old record for consecutive road losses. Miami shot a franchise-record and NBA season-high 67.5 percent from the field in Tuesday's 129-111 home win over Chicago. The Heat's 52-for-77 shooting was the best in the league since Utah shot exactly that number on Feb. 27, 2010. The all-time record, if you are wondering, is 70.7 percent by San Antonio in a 132-120 win over Dallas on April 16, 1983. Joe Johnson looks re-energized since signing with the Heat and had 24 points on 10-for-13 shooting. The Heat won in Phoenix 103-95 on Jan. 8 and have taken 11 straight in the series.
Key trends: Phoenix is 5-21 against the spread in its past 26 games. The Heat are 4-0 ATS in their past four at home. The favorite is 6-1 ATS in the past seven meetings. The "over/under" is 5-1 in Phoenix's past six.
Early lean: Heat and over.
Spurs at Pelicans (TBA)
First game of the TNT doubleheader and will feature live betting at sportsbooks. San Antonio hosted Detroit on Wednesday in its first home game since Feb. 6. We might see Gregg Popovich up to his old tricks here with guys like Tim Duncan and Tony Parker sitting out the second of a back-to-back on the road. New Orleans was in Houston on Wednesday with Anthony Davis listed as questionable. He did practice Tuesday and thus should play. The Spurs and Pelicans have split in 2015-16, each winning at home. San Antonio has dropped three straight in the Big Easy.
Key trends: The Spurs are 1-9 ATS in the past 10 in New Orleans. How about that!? The under is 3-1-1 in the past five meetings.
Early lean: That Spurs' losing streak in New Orleans ends, regardless.
Kings at Mavericks (TBA)
Sacramento was in Memphis on Wednesday. There was some concern about DeMarcus Cousins after tweaking his ankle on Monday, but he wasn't even listed on the injury report vs. the Grizzlies so presumably he plays here barring a setback. Thus I'm surprised there's an opening TBA here. Although Rudy Gay was in question Wednesday as well. Not sure he's TBA worthy. Dallas won a third straight game Tuesday, 121-108 over Orlando -- and that's the Mavs' lowest point total in the winning streak. The Mavericks made a season-high 55.8 percent of their field goal attempts (43-for-77) against the Magic. Dallas' four highest-scoring games of the season have come in the wins during this 4-1 homestand. These teams have split this season, each winning at home. Dallas has won an incredible 22 in a row at home vs. Sacramento.
Key trends: The Kings are 7-2 ATS in the past nine meetings. The under is 7-1 in the previous eight.
Early lean: Mavericks will win high-scoring game and by a ton if Cousins sits.
Thunder at Warriors (TBA)
Second TNT game and should draw stellar TV ratings (and betting action) off Saturday's incredible finish in OKC even with the late start in the East here. Alas, I give the Thunder little shot to win because they had to play at the Clippers on Wednesday night. Good luck winning in Oakland on heavy legs. Golden State played without Steph Curry and Andre Iguodala on Tuesday but beat Atlanta 109-105 in overtime for its 43rd straight home win. Draymond Green hit a prayer 3-pointer to beat the shot-clock buzzer to give the Warriors a four-point lead with 40.2 seconds left in OT. Green finished with 15 points, 13 rebounds and eight assists. Curry was out with the ankle he sprained in the third quarter Saturday vs. the Thunder, but he fully expects to play here. Iguodala had hamstring tightness, but I'm sure he will as well. Michael Jordan's Bulls set the NBA record of 44 home wins in a row from late March 1995 to early April 1996.
Key trends: The home team is 6-0-1 ATS in the past seven meetings. The over is 8-3 in the previous 11.
Early lean: Warriors, who have won four straight at home in series, as long as Curry plays.
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