Los Angeles Clippers vs. Oklahoma City Thunder
Wednesday, November 19
Oklahoma City, OK
7:00 PM CST
TV: Fox Sports Net Oklahoma (Cox 37, HD 722)
Radio: WWLS The Sports Animal (98.1 FM, 640 AM)
Clips Nation preview / ClipperBlog preview
In a car accident type of way, this Clippers vs. Thunder matchup is becoming must-see TV. People all around the media and the league are hyping this one up, sarcastically dubbing it the "Clash of the Titans" and whatnot. And why not? The two teams are a combined 1-19. So somebody has to pick up win No. 2. Has to. Right?
So this is kind of a big home game. Big for the reason that this is maybe the Thunder's best chance for a bit to get off this nasty eight game losing streak. Right now, OKC is 1-5 at home. And before the season, a lot thought (including myself) that this team would received a nice little push from the hometown fans and put together some nice home wins.
But upon further investigation, OKC fans have yet to really have a chance to make a difference. While the Ford Center patrons are louder than most crowds through the first three quarters and are filling up the arena, the time to really make a difference is money time - the fourth quarter. But in OKC's six home games, the Thunder has trailed by an average score of 74-65 has led only once (62-58 against the Hawks) and has only been within single digits once (73-70 against the Timberwolves). So you take those two games out which OKC played probably its two best games and the Thunder are trailing by an average of 16 points heading into the fourth. Tough to get loud and rowdy when the game has basically already been decided.
So tonight, please just give the fans a chance to make an impact. Play hard, play fast and play well - for more than a quarter and a half. On paper, I really don't know why the Clippers are this bad, but they are. On paper, I understand why Oklahoma City is this bad, but come on, 1-10? Against the Rockets, the Thunder played excellent ball for a half before falling on their faces in the second. But the Rockets are a pretty good team. If OKC can keep up the intensity and fight for 48 minutes, maybe they can pull this one out. Kevin Durant, Russell Westbrook and Jeff Green were all at Lloyd Noble to watch Stephen Curry and Blake Griffin duke it out last night. Maybe that display of fire and intensity will give them a little encouragement heading into tonight. A reminder like, "Oh yeah... that's why I play this game. Well, and because of the money of course."
And you've got to love the Chris Kaman/Robert Swift matchup. That's where my eyes will be all night.
Someone walks away with their second win. Thunder. Clippers. The NBA on FSN Oklahoma. Where someone has to win happens.