Preview: Lakers continue road trip against a red hot Russell Westbrook and the Thunder

The Lakers continue their tough road trip against the OKC Thunder. Before this season it would be easy to predict the winner with OKC having two superstars in Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook. But with Durant moving on to the Warriors, the Thunder aren’t as threatening anymore.

Even with Durant gone the Thunder will still be a tough matchup. Russell Westbrook is a top-five player in the league and has been red hot as of late. In the first two games he’s averaging 41.5 points, 12.5 rebounds, and 9.5 assists per game. The craziest stat of all is his USG% being higher than his true TS% in his last game.

While Westbrook is the focal point of the team, he’s not alone. Steven Adams is a great young center who provides fantastic rim protection and rebounding and will make it a difficult game for both Julius Randle and Timofey Mozgov.

With that said the Thunder as a whole haven’t been playing so great. They barely beat the 76ers late in the 4th quarter and had to go to overtime to beat the Suns. Maybe it’s because Russell Westbrook is taking a lot of inefficient shots but they aren’t unbeatable now.

It will be interesting to see how D’Angelo Russell and the rest of the young Lakers bounce back after a dreadful offensive game against the Jazz. Russell and Clarkson were a combined 1-8 shooting three’s; Julius Randle had an unimpressive 7/4/1 stat line. The Thunder’s defense is not even close to the Jazz’s and with Brandon Ingram looking to play, watch out for an improved offensive game.

The past two Lakers’ games have had polar opposite results. In game one against Houston, the Lakers were a scoring machine, getting 120 points to beat the Rockets. Then in game two, the Lakers only scored 89 but played great defense and only allowed 96 points.

With that said, it will be interesting to see which Lakers squad plays today. Will they be a great offensive unit? Or will they play tough defense to keep themselves in the game? Or maybe they play both. Either way it will be interesting to see how they play.

The game will be televised on Spectrum Sportsnet at 4:00 PST.

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