Thunder's 'Big 3' Gets First Warriors Test Tonight
OKLAHOMA CITY - Kevin Durant sat out Monday’s game against Brooklyn with an ankle sprain, but there was never a doubt he’d suit up against the Thunder on Wednesday night.
Durant told reporters at shootaround he’s good to go as Oklahoma City seeks its first win against its former standard-bearer. In three head-to-head matchups against KD last year, Russell Westbrook averaged 31.3 points per game while Durant averaged 37.6.
The Warriors swept the Thunder in four regular season contests last season. Durant didn’t play in the last bout in March.
Now, OKC can send out its three All-Stars to combat the Warriors’ four. Tonight’s game is the reason Sam Presti took a chance and went all-in to acquire Paul George and Carmelo Anthony in the offseason.
Paul George had 21 points and 10 rebounds in his only meeting with Golden State last year, a game the Pacers lost by 36. Carmelo Anthony had 15 points in 35 minutes in his only date with the Warriors last year. The Thunder needs its big three to have more success collectively than they did separately in 2016-17.
Golden State (13-4) is tied with Houston for the best record in the West and leads the league in scoring at 117.9 points per contest. Stephen Curry leads the team at 25.6 ppg with Durant close behind at 24.9 ppg. Klay Thompson averages 20.1 per game and is shooting 45.9 percent from deep and Draymond Green chips in 10.4 points, 7.6 rebounds and 6.6 assists per game.
The Warriors bench looks a little different than last year’s title team, but super-sub Andre Igoudala and versatile Shaun Livingston return alongside new addition Nick “Swaggy P” Young.
Opening tip is set for 7 p.m. CT at Chesapeake Energy Arena. The Thunder goes to Oakland for two road dates in February and will host Golden State again on April 3.