The Raptors Rule the East, the Rockets lead the West. The playoff race is coming to a close with the Jazz, Timberwolves, Bucks and Heat looking to stave off the competition and hold their places within the Top 8 of their respective conferences.
Oklahoma City Thunder @ San Antonio Spurs - Friday 11:00am
The Thunder have had a mixed bag of results recently. The team has strung together six victories, with one of those being against the Spurs but then dropped games against the Celtics and Trail Blazers.
The Spurs have had a similar run recently after going on a six game win streak. They were then downed by a plucky Bucks outfit who downed them by three points before falling to the Wizards after losing Aldridge.
This is a game which has the potential to be a stalemate. With the talent on both ends of the court possibly cancelling each other out. Keep an eye out for the unders in this game.
Now, onto the result. The Spurs have been sprawled across the headlines recently with rifts appearing between Kawai Leonard and both the coaching and playing group. This could be a huge distraction for the side as Westbrook and co roll into town.
The Spurs rely primarily on their big men with Aldridge leading the team with 23.2 point per game and Pau Gasol with 3.2 assists per game. A big effort from Thunder big man Steven Adams is required here. Adams has proven before he can handle San Antonio’s big fellas and with Aldridge injured in the Wizards game, he could have an easier night than first expected.
I definitely think the Thunder have found the Spurs in a good spot with off-court distractions impacting them here.
Tip: Oklahoma City Thunder -3
Milwaukee Bucks @ Golden State Warriors - Friday 1:30pm
It would take a brave bettor to take this game on. The Bucks have been largely inconsistent recently dropping games against the Clippers and Cavaliers before beating the Bulls and the Spurs.
The Warriors on the other hand have alternated wins and losses for their last six games. Injuries to Green, Thompson, Durant and Curry have been the cause of this. The latest reports indicate that Thompson, Green and Durant could be back for this one.
The Bucks are largely a mediocre team ranking 16th in points per game, 14th in assists per game, 30th in rebounds per game and 15th in points allowed.
With so many contingencies in this game, it's absolutely vital that we check out the injury report before tip-off. Durant is likely to be active to play in which case the Warriors are worth backing with the Under also worth considering.
Tip: Golden State Warriors -6