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Thunder Not Doing A Lot Of Things Correctly Right Now

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Associated Press Associated Press
OKLAHOMA CITY -

The Thunder has won games almost solely on will this season. So that's something, I guess.

But that runs out, as we've all seen over these last four games, last four losses. Those losses have come at a total margin of 30 points. That's not bad, single digit losses mean they've competed tightly in every game but just haven't been able to get the job done.

Strangely enough, their last game, a 104-88 loss at Detroit, was their only away game right in the middle of a nine game stretch. So they had to fly to Detroit in the middle of the night after a loss for the second game of a back-to-back just to turn around play three more at home. But that weird scheduling quirk is no excuse for not playing defense.

In those four losses, though, they've given up just over 111 points per. I'm not breaking new ground by saying that won't win a bunch of ballgames but that won't win a bunch of ballgames.

And with James Harden and the Rockets coming to town tonight, it won't get any easier on that end of the floor. The upside to tonight's game, which tips at 7 p.m. at the Peake, is there will be, like, so much offense. Or it could be a disaster where everybody forgets how jumpers work. I imagine it'll either be like the All-Star Game where guys are just flying unabated to the rack or everybody will settle too quickly for 18-footers and the shooting percentage plummets.

I honestly believe the former will happen. Harden is averaging a double-double with 30 points and 13 assists, adding 8 rebounds as well. Russell Westbrook is not officially averaging a triple-double but if you round up, which we will do in the hometown, he sits at 32-10-10.

James Harden is averaging more assists than Russell Westbrook.

It'll be fun to watch, these two dudes going back and forth at each other all night. Or at least it would be if they ever actually matchup on the floor. Andre Roberson will cover Harden for most of his minutes and Russ will draw Trevor Ariza.

When Russ attacks the basket, it's a full on assault. It's the first wave of Desert Storm. It's Black Friday at Wal-Mart in some suburb of Tampa. When Harden attacks, it's more of a calm day surfing. The waves roll in, gently pushing some bro back to shore, leaving viewers peacefully thinking, "That was dope."

So when Russ goes inside, Nene and Clint Capela will have to turn Russ away, which, as we all know, is no easy feat. Oppositely, when Harden drives, he'll have to absorb Steven Adams and Oklahoma's favorite fighting Frenchman, King Joffrey Lauvergne.

Domas Sabonis will foul out in the third, with at least three of those fouls drawn by Harden inside 10 feet.

Bet.

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