Sun, May 22, 12:29am by Kevin Pitstock
Game: Oklahoma City Thunder vs. Dallas Mavericks
Date/Time: Sunday May 22nd, 2011 / 11:00am AEST
Game three of the Western Conference Finals is set to take place featuring the Oklahoma City Thunder and Dallas Mavericks. The Thunder and Mavericks have split the first two games of the series. The winner of this series will move onto play the winner of the Chicago Bulls/Miami Heat series in the NBA Finals. Oklahoma City ins the fourth seed in the Western Conference, while Dallas comes in as the third seed.
Oklahoma City Thunder Overview:
Despite winning game two, the big news was the benching of point guard Russell Westbrook. Westbrook is expected to shake that off and come back in a starting role in game three. The Thunder used Westbrook as a main part of their offense, as he was the second highest scorer on the team with just shy of 20 points per game. The former Texas Longhorns star Kevin Durant once again was the leading scorer in the league. Durant and Westbrook are assisted by Serge Ibaka, Kendrick Perkins and James Harden.
The Thunder won 55 games this season, which won the Northwest Division. Last season, Oklahoma City won 50, so this year was a franchise record. Oklahoma City scored 104.8 points per game, which was the fifth most in the NBA. The Thunder beat Denver and Memphis in their two postseason series’.
Dallas Mavericks Overview:
Dallas has had the tale of two games in the Western Conference Finals. Dirk Nowitzki totally dominated in game one to lead them to a win. Then in game two, while Nowitzki scored 29 points, they were unable to win their second straight. The Mavericks finished the regular season with 57 wins, which was tied with the Lakers for second in the Western Conference. Dallas finished four games behind the Spurs in the division.
Nowitzki led the team in scoring during the regular season with 23 points per game, while Tyson Chandler ripped down just shy of 10 rebounds per game. Dallas was the 11th best scoring team in the league, scoring 100.2 points per game. The Mavericks, led by Jason Kidd was the second best assist team in the league; averaging just under 24 per game.
Thunder/Mavericks Pick and Prediction:
This series has been very difficult to predict to this point. We have been wrong with the picks in the first two games. We feel this game will revert back to game two, and the home crowd will help the Thunder. Oklahoma City comes in -2.5, and we are comfortable with our pick of them winning this game.
Our pick: Oklahoma City Thunder -2.5 over Dallas Mavericks. Bet the Thunder at Centrebet.
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