It really was an amazing circumstance last night in Oklahoma City. I can't remember the last time I saw a Thunder team come completely unglued like that. We can attribute a lot of that to Coach Brooks. He always seems to have the same demeanor on the sidelines no matter what is happening with his team on the court. Last night, he gave the appearance of panic though when he started playing that intentional foul game with Asik. And I think the whole situation really affected K.D. I know I've never seen Durant so visibly shaken by a poor performance. He didn't have his shot, nobody else was there to pick up the slack and for the first time, it appeared as though the Thunder, and Durant especially, really missed Russell Westbrook.
I thought losing Westbrook was going to end up being a big problem for the Thunder in these playoffs. I didn't think we would see it in the 1st round though. The matchup was still a good one for OkC. If the Thunder can get past the Rocks in this round, and that has suddenly come into serious question now, the Thunder are going to have their hands full in Round 2 against either the Griz or the Clips. Without Westbrook, there's no one to check CP3 or Crawford for the Clips, and the Griz can simply bully a team with their size and physical play at both ends of the court. Westbrook can be erratic, but he could put pressure on Memphis' Randolph and Gasol in the paint and maybe free things up a little for Durant. But with Durant really being the only viable option to "go off", that Griz defense can really put the clamps down. We shall see.
THE MLB (3-0 last night and 12-7 so far for the week)
BUTTA (no play last night and 3-2 so far for the week)
PHILLIES (KENDRICK -210) over Marlins (Sanabia) - The Fish showed some fire the last 3 days at home against the Mets by winning 2 of 3, but now they hit the road, and the Mets really are struggling right now. The Phils have shown many of the same problems we've seen over the last couple of years, but I'm going to hang with Kendrick here. He's 9-2 lifetime against Miami, and I think being at home will only help
ON THE CUTTING ROOM FLOOR
BREWERS (PERALTA -105) over Cardinals (Westbrook) - The Redbirds offense has left them over the last week, and they're running into a team, in the Brewers, that's red hot right now. Also, Westbrook is only 2-4 lifetime against the Crew, and he's also only 50-65 in his career against division opponents.
RUN-(NING) LINES (8-7 ATS/8-7 SU/11-4 TOTALS last night and 26-32/29-28/36-22 so far for the week)
1. Rays (+1 1/2, O7 1/2) at ROYALS
2. RANGERS (-1 1/2, U8) over White Sox
3. Red Sox (-1 1/2, O8 1/2) over BLUE JAYS
4. ASTROS (+1 1/2, U9 1/2) vs. Tigers
5. Orioles (+1 1/2, O9) at ANGELS
6. BRAVES (-1 1/2, U7) over Nationals
7. CUBS (-1 1/2, O7 1/2) over Padres
8. Marlins (+1 1/2) at PHILLIES
9. BREWERS (-1 1/2, U9) over Cardinals
BROOMOLOGY (3-2 ATS & 4-1 SU yesterday and 6-7 & 7-6 so far for the week)
Road Dog (5-2 ATS & 4-3 SU so far for the week)
Rays (+1 1/2) at ROYALS
THE NBA (1-2 ATS/1-2 SU/2-1 TOTALS last night and 5-7/6-6/6-6 so far for the week)
BUTTA (0-1 last night and so far for the week)
I don't mind saying it again: This 1st round for this season has me a little bit bamboozled right now. For that reason, I'm not going to mess with either of tonight's games because I can't see a clear edge, and even if I did, it might not play out.
ALL THE REST
1. BULLS (-1 1/2, O183 1/2) 102, Nets 99
2. WARRIORS (-1 1/2, O211) 125, Nuggets 113
That's it for a dreary Thursday here in God's Country. It's raining now, and the Royals game has been stopped in the 4th inning. The forecast is calling for maybe 3" of snow tonight too! Global warming strikes again. Have a great rest of your Thursday. Be careful out there if you're starting your weekend early tonight. I'll see you again tomorrow.