Posted by: Lowery Johnson on November 14th, 2010The author's views are entirely his or her own and may not reflect the views of the Utah Jazz.
Here’s my thing with the OKC Thunder, they are my second favorite team in the NBA as of last year. They’re such a young group of guys working day in and day out for recognition, and I can’t help but admire their efforts and talents. Tomorrow they come to visit us in Salt Lake City and I couldn’t be more excited. Why? Because last time they were here, things got a little crazy.
But, if Jazz fans are expecting Kevin Durant to just lay down while we continue our winning streak, they are mistaken. In April when the Jazz hosted OKC, Kevin Durant got robbed on the last call of one of the most intense, high-scoring games in Jazz franchise history. In case you’ve forgotten, here’s the clip:
Now I’m not holding this against CJ Miles by any means, but if I were Kevin Durant I’d be ticked.
What to expect:
Tomorrow night I’m expecting Durant to come to ESA with something to prove, and you should too. Currently for the 2010-2011 season, Durant is averaging 28.9 points per game and 6.6 rebound per game. He’s athletic, talented, and with Westbrook by his side the two are a threat to any team, averaging a combined 53.2 points per game.
In April’s high scoring game, Durant scored 45 points, had 7 rebounds, 4 assistss, 2 steals and 2 blocks. It’s no wonder they call him Durantula, the guy’s a monster.
Of course I’m not counting out our boys, they’ve clearly proven that even some of the best players in the league aren’t safe when facing down Millsap, Williams and Jefferson, but I am saying it’s going to be a great game, and I predict a much different one from what we saw on Halloween.
Why we can win:
While the numbers say enough about Kevin Durant’s talent, the Jazz have some strengths OKC doesn’t. For instance, Durant, while he’s tough and long, he’s small in comparison to Millsap and Jefferson.
Millsap, while an inch shorter than Durant, has about 20 lbs on him as well as an extra year of experience. Jefferson as a Center-Forward has an extra inch on Durant and about 50 lbs, and three additional years experience as a pro, but is still trying to figure out Sloan’s offense. Kirilenko is about Durant’s size but out weighs him in experience and his ability to shoot threes.
Durant, while an amazing athlete, is not invincible to the Comeback Kids.
Not only that but we’re playing with home court advantage, and for some reason in Utah that has proven to be something substantial for the Jazz. Not only does Durant remember that controversial call last time he was in Utah, but Jazz fans do too. And they will voice that, as always.
I’ve never been disappointed at the quality of basketball played by these two teams. Win or lose both teams lay it all out on the court. We can win, but it won’t be effortless. Although, I’m hoping it won’t be us clawing, tooth and nail to get back into the fourth quarter but either way, I’ll be wearing my lucky sweater.
We handled the Heat, we fought off some Magic, we hunted a Hawk and we tamed a Bobcat…. What’s a little Thunderstorm after all that?
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