NBA Game Preview: Oklahoma City Thunder at Phoenix Suns

Dec 23, 2021

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Game: Oklahoma City Thunder at Phoenix Suns 

Time: 9:00 p.m. ET 

Odds: Thunder +15, Suns -15 

Total: 214.5 

The Suns are smoking hot right now. They have the NBA’s best record (by a half-game) at 25-5 and have won eight of their last ten games including the last four straight. Tonight, they put their 14-game home winning streak on the line against Oklahoma City. The Thunder is just 11-19, but OKC has won its last three straight games all against quality opponents.  

OKC beat the Clippers 104-103 last Saturday to start the streak. Then, it was a 102-99 defeat of Memphis before last night’s 108-94 win over Denver. All five Thunder starters scored in double figures and OKC’s defense held reigning NBA MVP Nikola Jokic to just nine shots all game. The Thunder have held two of their past three opponents under 100 points. 

Oklahoma City is now 4-1 ATS in its last five games. The Thunder has been even better when playing on the road. In their last 11 games away from home, OKC is 9-2 ATS and they have done pretty well against the Suns recently. The Thunder has covered the spread in seven of the last ten meetings between the two teams.  

The big thing OKC will have to deal with tonight is Suns guard Devin Booker. The Suns leading scorer is back in the lineup after missing some time with a hamstring injury. Phoenix beat the Lakers by 18 points earlier this week as Booker scored 24 points on 8-of-16 shooting from the floor. Five other Suns players scored in double figures too. Deandre Ayton added 19 points and 11 rebounds. 

The Suns are definitely talented, but they have had issues covering the spread against OKC especially at home. In the last seven Suns-Thunder games played at the Footprint Center, Phoenix is just 2-5 ATS. In their last six games overall though, the Suns are 5-1 ATS, including covering in their last four games in a row.  

Tonight’s total is set at 214.5 and seems a bit low for this matchup. Historically, when these two teams meet, a lot of points go up on the board. Over the last ten Suns-Thunder games, the final score has averaged 224.2 points. The Over hit in six of those ten games and that includes the Over hitting twice in the past three games.  

Phoenix plays at one of the fastest paces in the NBA. They are third in possessions per game and the Suns are ranked No. 6 in offensive efficiency. The Thunder are not all that great offensively. They are actually the league’s lowest-scoring team at 99.5 points per game. However, you would never know that from their play in the last four games.  

The Thunder put 110, 104, 102, and 108 in their last four games. Three of those games went Under the posted total. OKC trends Under for the season too. The Under is 19-11 in OKC’s 30 games thus far. The last two games in this series have seen plenty of points. The Suns won both games winning 123-120 on the road and 140-103 at home. Both of those games were last season.