OKC Thunder (1-0, 0-0 road) at Minnesota Timberwolves (0-0, 0-0 home)
Offensive Rating: Thunder – 104.3 (5th), Wolves– 000.0 (t-30th)
Defensive Rating: Thunder – 95.7 (3rd), Wolves – 000.0 (t-30th)
Pace: Thunder – 93.0 (6th), Wolves – 00.0 (t-30th)
View from the enemy: A Wolf Among Wolves
Does this game feel trap-ish to you, or is that just me? A supposedly improved Wolves team with a great coach led by a bunch of exciting new players and with Oklahoma City coming off a game and long trip the night before — feels dangerous, doesn’t it?
Minnesota coming in: It’s the opener for the Wolves, who went 2-0 in the preseason against the Bucks.
Three Big Things
1. Rubio Fever. I won’t lie; I’m excited to watch Ricky Rubio. There was so much hype and buzz surrounding him before the 2009 draft, it got to the point where I started wondering what it would be like to have him running point alongside Westbrook and Durant. He’s not starting tonight, but will play plenty. I’m curious if he’ll be able to handle Westbrook at all, or if the Thunder will run Ricky ragged.
2. Rebounding. Obviously Kevin Love can be a monster inside, but like Perk, shed a bunch of weight in the offseason to re-discover some old athleticism. Serge Ibaka wasn’t much of a factor against the Magic, but will be called upon to battle Love on the boards in this one. The Wolves want to run, gun shoot 3s and share the ball, but they’re a premier rebounding group with Love inside. Give Minnesota a lot of second chances and you’ll give them the game.
3. Fatigue. You’d think it wouldn’t be an issue because it’s just the second game and the Thunder should be fresh and ready. Still, it was a late flight to Minneapolis last night and it’s not exactly an ideal back-to-back going from OKC to Minnesota.
Tip at 7:00 CT. Go Thunder Ups.