Free NBA Picks: Thunder at Wizards Odds
by Chad Matthews - 2/1/2014
The Oklahoma City Thunder are showing basketball critics that they can win despite the absence of all-star guard Russell Westbrook. Since the absence of Westbrook, Kevin Durant has carried the weight of the team on his back, posting more than 30 points in each of his last 12 games played until last night as he only finished with 26 points as the Thunder rested him the entire fourth quarter in a blowout win over Brooklyn. He is averaging an NBA-best averaging 31.3 points per game this season.
The Washington Wizards had expected a better outcome this season after acquiring center Marcin Gortat, but they have struggled at home this season, posting a 10-11 record at the Verizon Center this year. They continue to struggle on both sides of the ball at times and lack consistency. The lack of experience playing together as a team has shown in some mediocre results this season for the Wizards.
Thunder at Wizards betting story lines:
Oklahoma City comes into this game with a 38-10 record and has posted a 18-7 record on the road this season. The Thunder have captured the top seed in the Western Conference as the previous-leading San Antonio Spurs have now lost five of their past seven games to allow the Thunder to climb into the top spot.
The Thunder have rattled off 10 straight wins after besting the Nets last night on the road. Earlier in the week the Thunder were able to capture a convincing 112-95 win on the road at Miami as Durant went off for 33 points, 7 rebounds and 5 assists. Durant has four games this month with at least 45 points, and his 30-point per game streak is the longest since Tracy McGrady did 14 straight back in 2003. Oklahoma City center Serge Ibaka continues to be dominant in the paint for the Thunder in averaging 14.7 points and 9 rebounds per game.
Oklahoma City has continued its winning ways as Westbrook is still sidelined with injury, and it appears that no team can stop Durant or the Oklahoma City Thunder. The Thunder are shooting 47.3 percent from the field as a team, ranking third amongst the league. Oklahoma City is on a tear and looks to continue their dominance tonight at the Verizon Center.
The Washington Wizards were hoping for better results this season, but they still hold the sixth seed in the lowly Eastern Conference. They are 22-23 on the year and have had troubles protecting their home court this season. The Wizards have been inconsistent as of late, alternating wins and losses over their past eight games, and at times they have had trouble putting up points on offense.
The Wizards leading scorer, John Wall, is averaging 19.8 points per game this season. Wall has gotten better support this season from shooting guard Bradley Beal, who is averaging 17.1 points per game. The Wizards have talent in the paint with power forward Nene Hilario and Gortat, who are both averaging double-figures per game in scoring this season. Wizards forward Trevor Ariza has been known to take over games by himself but has had few showings of that this season but is still is managing a respectable 14 points and 6 rebounds per game this season.
Thunder at Wizards NBA Betting Odds and Key Trends
Bookmaker lists the Oklahoma City Thunder as 4.5-point road favorites with the posted total set at 202.5 points. The Oklahoma City Thunder are 29-19 ATS their last 48 games and a perfect 6-0 ATS their last six road games. The Thunder are 9-1 ATS their last 10 games and also 4-0 ATS their last four games playing on a back-to-back. The Wizards are 0-4 ATS their last four games played at the Verizon Center.
Free NBA Picks: Thunder at Wizards Betting Predictions
Even though the Oklahoma City Thunder are heading into Washington tonight on a back-to-back, they have been playing incredible basketball as of late. The Washington Wizards just seem to be having a difficult time this season covering at home and protecting their home court. The Thunder are all rallied up with this streak they have been on, and I don't see a disorganized Washington Wizards defense being able to slow the offensive potency of Kevin Durant and the Oklahoma City Thunder. Take the Thunder as the road warrior tonight to cover this small spread.
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