Indianapolis Star
National Basketball Association
Preview
Portland at Oklahoma City
When: 8:00 PM ET, Tuesday, January 22, 2019
Where: Chesapeake Energy Arena, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma

The Oklahoma City Thunder have snapped a slump with consecutive victories and they aim to keep the momentum going when they host the Portland Trail Blazers on Tuesday. The Thunder dropped five of six games before sweeping a two-game road trip against the Philadelphia 76ers and New York Knicks.

Forward Paul George scored 31 points for the second straight game in Monday's 127-109 victory over the Knicks, while point guard Russell Westbrook narrowly missed a triple-double with 17 points, 10 rebounds and nine assists. "We took care of business," Westbrook told reporters afterward. "We were locked in. When we're locked in as a team, it's tough to beat us." Portland opened a three-game road trip with a 109-104 win over the Utah Jazz on Monday for its third straight win and ninth in the past 12 games. The strong showing against the Jazz allowed the Trail Blazers to move a season-high 10 games over .500.

TV: 8 p.m. ET, NBATV, NBCS Northwest (Portland), FS Oklahoma

ABOUT THE TRAIL BLAZERS (29-19): Star point guard Damian Lillard had 26 points, eight rebounds and eight assists against Utah for his sixth straight 20-point effort and is averaging 27.3 points during the stretch. Center Jusuf Nurkic scored 17 of his 22 points and recorded four of his six blocked shots - which matched a career high - during a third quarter in which Portland scored 39 points to take control of the contest. "Overall the second half was better," Nurkic said in a postgame television interview. "We came for the win and we know how hard it is to win on the road."

ABOUT THE THUNDER (28-18): Six players scored in double digits against the Knicks and two of them were reserves as guard Dennis Schroder scored 17 points and forward Abdel Nader tallied 16. "We've been preaching this all year long that the first group and second group have to be hitting on all cylinders, have to help each other," George told reporters. "Our second unit came in and did the same job." Starting forward Jerami Grant scored 16 points against New York for his sixth straight double-digit effort and he is averaging 16.3 points over his past six games.

BUZZER BEATERS

1. George scored 37 points and Westbrook added 31 on Jan. 4 when the Thunder posted a 111-109 victory to halt an eight-game losing streak in Portland.

2. Nurkic has seven 20-point outings in the past 14 games.

3. Oklahoma City C Steven Adams has scored in double digits in eight straight games and is 50-of-70 from the field during the stretch.

PREDICTION: Thunder 109, Trail Blazers 107
Stats and Records
Team Comparison
  W/L Strk Home Away Day Night Div Conf
Portland 29-19 W3 20-7 9-12 0-0 29-19 3-6 16-16
Oklahoma City 28-18 W2 14-7 14-11 2-1 26-17 3-4 16-14
Last Meeting
Portland Oklahoma City
Date Away Home Pts Reb FG% Pts Reb FG%
1/4/19 OKC 111 POR 109 109 50 43.2 111 49 42.6
Player Stats
Previous Matchup
Points Player Total FG% FTM
Portland D. Lillard 23 36.8 8
Oklahoma City P. George 37 43.5 12
Rebounds Player Total Off Def
Portland A. Aminu 15 4 11
Oklahoma City S. Adams 12 5 7
Assists Player  
Portland E. Turner 9
Oklahoma City R. Westbrook 7
Season
Points Player Total FG% FTM
Portland D. Lillard 1303 44.8 300
Oklahoma City P. George 1278 44.2 263
Rebounds Player Total Off Def
Portland J. Nurkic 537 169 368
Oklahoma City S. Adams 491 231 260
Assists Player  
Portland D. Lillard 316
Oklahoma City R. Westbrook 399
Quickchart Matchup
Portland Portland Off vs  Oklahoma City Oklahoma City Defense
Portland Off vs Oklahoma City - Points For 112.4 Points For
Portland Off vs Oklahoma City - Points Against 109.0 Points Against
Portland - FG% 46.1 FG%
Oklahoma City - FG% 45.6 FG%
Portland - Reb 48.0 Reb
Oklahoma City - Reb 45.2 Reb
Oklahoma City Oklahoma City Off vs  Portland Portland Defense
Oklahoma City Off vs Portland - Points For 113.8 Points For
Oklahoma City Off vs Portland - Points Against 109.9 Points Against
Oklahoma City - FG% 45.6 FG%
Portland - FG% 45.5 FG%
Oklahoma City - Reb 48.1 Reb
Portland - Reb 43.9 Reb