The 9-1 Milwaukee Bucks take on the 4-6 Oklahoma City Thunder Wednesday night in downtown Oklahoma City. You may have noticed the Bucks seem to be playing the same teams: the Atlanta Hawks, OKC, the Philadelphia 76er’s. Don’t hold your breath just yet- The Bucks play the Hawks on Monday (Nov. 14th) and Philadelphia Friday (Nov. 18th). There isn’t a ton of new information for me to share with you that wasn’t shared in a previous previews. But the Bucks will play to win, and we still have information to cover.
Giannis will not play tonight. Neither will Jrue Holiday. Because of this Vegas has the Bucks as only a 1.5 point favorite.
Have George Hill do George Hill things- not turn the ball over and manage the tempo of the game. George Hill is not a big-time prolific scorer or stat player. He is, however, excellent at not turning the ball over. OKC is second in the NBA right now in terms of team steals. (9.5 steals a game) They like to try to get teams to turnover the ball. It’ll be important for the Bucks to protect the rock and avoid costly turnovers. (As a point of comparison the Bucks are currently 12th in team steals at 7.9 per game)
The Bucks need to continue to rebound the ball and assert their will on defense. OKC is not an amazing home team. Milwaukee needs to keep playing well on the road.
The Opponent: The Oklahoma City Thunder
On Nov. 5th (Saturday) OKC really shot well from 3. (34%) They also did not really turnover the ball very much for such a young team. What killed them was the rebound differential- the Bucks outrebounded the Thunder 55-38. OKC needs better center play. The Bucks also outshot them from behind the arc (38%).
Mike Muscala started against the Bucks on Nov. 5th at center and did not play well. Tonight we should expect to see Jeremiah Robinson-Earl. For the Thunder they have to rebound the ball better.
Things to tell your buddies as you are watching the game
- Brook Lopez is really playing well. He is averaging 2.5 blocks a game , well above his career average of 1.8.
- Lopez only played 13 games all of last year. This is game 11 and he has played in every one.
- Lopez is a twin. His brother Robin, a former Buck, plays for Cleveland. That game on Nov. 16th is a must-see game.
- While Robin Lopez played for the Bucks he averaged 1.5 turnovers per game. He averaged about 10 minutes a game. So far this season, Brook Lopez is averaging 1.4 turnover per game. He is also averaging 30.1 minutes per contest.
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