Golden State (2-3) at Oklahoma City (3-2)
When: Saturday, May 28th 2016
Where: Chesapeake Energy Arena, Oklahoma City, OK
Time: 9:05 ET | TV: TNT
The Golden State Warriors will need to play much better in Oklahoma City than they did in Games 3 and 4 if they want to force a Game 7 back home against the Thunder. The Warriors were humiliated in the two games in OKC by an average of 26 points, but managed to pull things together in Game 5 to stave off elimination. Draymond Green delivered 11 points, 13 rebounds, four blocks and only two turnovers in Game 5 after two poor outings on the road. Green combined to go 2-of-16 from the field and commit 10 turnovers in Games 3 and 4. “The one thing I can control is how I go out there and fight and battle,” Green told reporters. “That was my mind-set (Thursday): I was coming to a fight. That’s it. I’m going to go out there and do that. If all else fails, I’m going to fight. That’s what I did, and that’ll be my mind-set for the rest of the series.” Andrew Bogut scored a postseason career-high 15 points to go with 14 rebounds on Thursday and Golden State needs one more win to surpass last season’s franchise-record total of 83 (regular and postseason).
Oklahoma City got typical efforts from Kevin Durant, who scored 40 points in Thursday’s loss, and Russell Westbrook (31), but the two could not get enough help from anyone else to close out the series. Oklahoma City received a combined 30 points from Andre Roberson and 23 from Dion Waiters in Games 3 and 4 but the pair put up a total of six points (all from Roberson) in Game 5. The Thunder would prefer to close out the series at home in Game 6 and avoid having to go back to Golden State for a potential Game 7. “Oh, we know we’re going back home,” Durant told reporters. “But we can’t relax. We’ve got to keep our foot on the gas, and we’ve got to play much better. I thought we played extremely hard (Thursday). They didn’t outplay us. They didn’t outwork us. I thought both teams were in a slugfest (Thursday). So we’ve got to bring that energy back home.” Anthony Morrow had a postseason-high 10 points on 4-of-4 shooting in Game 5.
After watching what happened in Games 3 and 4 at Chesapeake Energy Arena, I have to believe that Golden State just can’t win there right now the way the Thunder are playing. The atmosphere in the building tonight will carry the Thunder to the NBA Finals.
Pick: Thunder -2.5