Friday, February 14, 2020
The New Orleans Pelicans have been playing impressive basketball lately, winning six of their last eight games. With a win tonight, they will have captured their fourth straight win. They will hope to do that as they host the Oklahoma City Thunder at the Smoothie King Center.
The Thunder, on the other hand, are trying to avoid a third consecutive loss tonight. Tonight’s matchup will mark the fourth and final time that these two ball clubs will meet up this season. The last time they saw each other was on December 1 when the Thunder came away with a 107-104 victory. During that game, Danilo Gallinari scored 23 points, pulled down 11 rebounds, and dished off 3 assists while Jrue Holiday had 26 points, 3 rebounds, and 4 assists.
A LITTLE BIT OF HISTORY:
The Pelicans and the Thunder have played each other a grand total of 60 times in the past as the Thunder won 35 games while the Pelicans were limited to just 25 victories.
Oklahoma City Thunder:
-Darius Bazley (knee; 4.5 PPG, 3.7 RPG, 0.5 APG, 38.3 FG%, 30.0 3P%)
-Andre Roberson (knee)
-Deonte Burton (coach’s decision; 2.7 PPG, 1.3 RPG, 0.3 APG, 36.6 FG%, 17.9 3P%)
-Hamidou Diallo (coach’s decision; 6.4 PPG, 3.4 RPG, 0.6 APG, 45.1 FG%, 17.2 3P%)
-Kevin Hervey (coach’s decision; 0.0 PPG, 0.3 RPG, 0.2 APG, 0.0 FG%, 0.0 3P%)
-Isaiah Roby (0.0 PPG, 0.0 RPG, 0.0 APG, 0.0 FG%)
New Orleans Pelicans:
-Brandon Ingram (ankle; 24.9 PPG, 6.4 RPG, 4.2 APG, 47.3 FG%, 40.0 3P%)
-Darius Miller (Achilles)
-Kenrich Williams (back; 3.8 PPG, 5.1 RPG, 1.5 APG, 34.3 FG%, 26.0 3P%)
-Nickeil Alexander-Walker (coach’s decision; 5.1 PPG, 2.0 RPG, 1.8 APG, 33.9 FG%, 34.2 3P%)
-Jahlil Okafor (coach’s decision; 7.9 PPG, 4.3 RPG, 1.3 APG, 61.1 FG%, 50.0 3P%)
-Zylan Cheatham (G-League; 1.3 PPG, 2.0 RPG, 0.7 APG, 40.0 FG%, 0.0 3P%)
-Josh Gray (G-League; 1.0 PPG, 1.0 RPG, 1.0 APG, 50.0 FG%)
The Thunder would have control of things in the first half as they shot fifty-two percent from the field, keeping the Pelicans at forty-seven percent shooting. Danilo Gallinari chalked up 14 points which included two three-pointers in the second quarter. Shai Gilgeous-Alexander contributed with 13 points while dishing out three assists.
Center Steven Adams scored seven points while knocking down a rare three-pointer. He also had seven rebounds, one assist, one steal, and 2 blocks while Chris Paul had six points on forty-percent shooting. Dennis Schroder played the most minutes off the bench as he threw up 13 points.
As for the home team, Zion Williamson got hot for 15 points as he shot fifty percent from the field. Both Josh Hart and Lonzo Ball scored seven points each while Ball knocked down two three-pointers in the process. Hart also had a three-pointer while Derrick Favors and Jrue Holiday earned four points each. J.J. Redick played 13 minutes off the bench as he had seven points but it was the Oklahoma team that went into halftime with a 66-58 lead.
The Pelicans would attempt to make a comeback in the second half as they went on a 60-57 run. During that run, Williamson added 17 more points to his scoring total while grabbing three rebounds. Holiday helped out with 10 points which included a three-pointer. Redick played the most minutes off the bench as he chalked up 17 points.
On the other end of the court, Gallinari scored 15 points while Paul and Gilgeous-Alexander combined for 12 points. Schroder dropped nine points off the bench as the Thunder held on to take a 123-118 win. Danilo Gallinari finished the game with 29 points, 2 rebounds, one assist, and a season-high-tying 2 steals while Zion Williamson had 32 points, 6 rebounds, one assist, and one block.
The Oklahoma City Thunder will host Nikola Jokic (20.6 PPG, 10.2 RPG, 6.9 APG, 51.8 FG%, 32.9 3P%) and the Denver Nuggets (38-17) on Friday at 8:00 p.m. This will be the second of four times that these two teams will meet up this season. The last time they saw each other was on December 14 when the Thunder fell to the Nuggets, 110-102. Jokic finished that game with 28 points, 14 rebounds, 12 assists, and one steal while Dennis Schroder settled for 22 points, 5 rebounds, and 4 assists.
The New Orleans Pelicans will travel to Oregon to fight C.J. McCollum (21.3 PPG, 3.9 RPG, 3.8 APG, 44.6 FG%, 38.3 3P%) and the Portland Trail Blazers (25-31) on Friday at 10:30 p.m. This will mark the fourth and final time that these ball clubs will face off this season. February 11 was the last time they met as the Pelicans handed the Trail Blazers, 138-117. During that game, Zion Williamson scored 31 points, grabbed 9 rebounds, gave out 5 assists, and committed one steal while McCollum had 20 points, one rebound, and 3 assists.