The Knicks fans who wanted Carmelo Anthony leave NY already will get a close look of what they gained and what was lost, as the Knicks will open new season in Anthony’s new city, OKC, to meet with their recent point leader and the MVP of the last season, Russell Westbrook, and his Thunder. This could go ugly quickly, but this season is not about winning for the Knicks, it’s about losing.
Knicks at Thunder
Spread: Oklahoma City -11 (-110) at BetDSI Sportsbook
Total: over 215.5 (-110)
The Knicks season will likely resemble the preseason
Kudos to Phil Jackson and his decision to draft Porzingis, and kudos to Porzingis himself, for proving doubters wrong to become one of the most coveted assets in the league. However, is a rare shiny moment for the Knicks organization, one that couldn’t help Jackson save his chair. Porzingis, one time excited to be a member of the Knicks, may not want to extend his contract with the franchise. In fact, the Knicks have been all about broken relationships. Their former stars are not welcome in the arena, they failed to offer a head coaching gig to all-time great Ewing, sack GMs and coaches and drive away players. If losing is not enough, these are tough times for the franchise and their fans.
To stop you short of believing that I’m bashing them for letting Anthony go, I’m actually not a big fan of his game. Never was, and his departure will clear the air and help establish the winning culture. His me-first approach may suit Big Apple more than other NBA venues, but it hurt the Knicks. In the end, the Knicks actually got an excellent return in his trade. Unfortunately, other decisions have been terrible.
The Knicks enter the 2017/18 season without a starting point guard. They drafted unready Ntilikina and his inexperience has been compounded by the untimely injury that has prevented him to dress for the preseason games. The Knicks are the only NBA team to lose all of their preseason games, and if you are a fan of tanking, they should probably look to continue in the same fashion. (It will probably happen anyway). But, back to the PG situation. Ramon Sessions and Jarret Jack are candidates to start, an underwhelming solution, even for a team who started Rose last year. Tim Hardaway was given fortunes to play for them again, although he plays only with the ball. Another addition, McDermott will start at the three. European duo of Porzingis and Hernangomez will start in the frontcourt. There’s an outside chance that Joakim Noah re-claims his spot with the starting unit, but he’s suspended for the first 12 games of the season.
Place: Chesapeake Energy Arena, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
Date/Time: Thursday, October 19th, 2017. 8:00 PM ET
TV Coverage: TNT
The Oklahoma sheriff has new deputies
The Oklahoma City Thunder had a terrible summer of 2016, when they had to cope with their former MVP Kevin Durant leaving the team to sign with the Warriors. They managed to stay in the playoffs and Russell Westbrook packed like a two seasons worth of energy into one to claim the MVP for his efforts, so you can say that they had a successful season in OKC. However, it was quite obvious that the lack of system won’t get them too far, so they jumped any opportunity to improve their roster.
The fact that they acquired two forwards who used to be alphas smells trouble, so coach Donovan immediately decided to play Anthony as a power forward, which is a smart move. However, Westbrook never liked playing second fiddle to Durant, a superior player over George and Anthony, so it’s going to mentally tough on all of them. Also, as George and Anthony will quickly learn (or be reminded of), the Western Conference is much more competitive conference. Further, OKC gave up many players to land these stars, so there’s significantly less depth on the roster.
Injury to a backup guy Patrick Paterson is already impactful on the rotation, so you can imagine what kind of a ripple would a starter’s injury cause. Still, with hardworkers Andre Roberson and Steven Adams completing the starting lineup, the Thunder can match their first unit with the best in the league.
New York Knicks at Oklahoma City Thunder Game Trends & Prediction
The Knicks were very average when it comes to betting. They’ve gone 42-40 against the spread last season, and 38-42-2 compared to the over/under lines. Most of those unders came in the final weeks of the season, when the disappointment of failing to reach the playoffs sucked the energy out of veteran players.
The Oklahoma City Thunder overachieved, probably due to the fact that the expectations were rather low after Durant’s departure. They mustered an excellent 45-36-1 ATS overall record, rewarding their backers on most nights. As far as the total have gone, they somehow got a reputation of up-tempo team, so the high lines they faces shifted their O/U record towards the unders. For the season, the Thunder went 37-44-1. The first record will likely change for the worse, if not be reversed, but I don’t see a much different O/U record for this entire season.
This year, I decided to go even more transparent about my bets and will show you the real-time ranking for all the teams showcased here at you favorite betting place, through a unique ranking system – AdmiRank. This system helps you understand how good NBA teams are on a scale to 100. It’s quite obvious that I don’t hold Knicks in high regard, and you probably agree on it with me. Yet, I’m not ready to ascend the Thunder too high just yet, despite their All-Star additions.
It’s a popular mantra these days around the NBA – these teams need time. It’s quite common thing after a summer filled with breaking news, but while one team hope to improve over time, the Knicks might find themselves out of the contest by the turn of the calendar, and focus on playing the percentages for the upcoming draft. It’s too early to go there just yet, so I’m just mentioning it to explain the air surrounding this matchup.
Vegas opened up with about 10 points high of a handicap, which will probably only rise. Go grab it as soon as you can, as it’s just enough value to take the home side. The total will probably hover around 215-217 range, not close enough for any kind of a wager. Since this is going to be a blowout, guard yourself against any over wagers by asking for a larger minimal value.
My Pick: Oklahoma City -11 (-110)
Total: no bet on the totals here
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