Oklahoma City Thunder vs. Toronto Raptors 10/17/14 NBA Preseason Pick, Odds, Prediction
Toronto Raptors (4-1) at Oklahoma City Thunder (2-2)
Friday October 17
Oklahoma City Thunder -1 -- Over/Under: 204.5 See the Latest Odds
The Toronto Raptors look to continue a strong preseason as they visit the Oklahoma City Thunder on Friday night.
The Toronto Raptors are 4-1 to kick off the preseason but they haven’t faced stiff competition yet with a split in two games against the Kings, two wins against the Celtics and a win over the Knicks. SG DeMar DeRozan has been playing with Team USA and has looked like an upper echelon scorer in preseason action with 18 or more points in all three games where he played 20+ minutes. PG Kyle Lowry signed a four year contract in the offseason and is likely headed for another strong season after a career year in 2013-14 and preseason where he’s showcased his full skill set of scoring, passing and generating steals. The Raptors have talent at the forward position as well with SF Terrence Ross primed for an increased workload and PF Amir Johnson and C Jonas Valanciunas each looking like a double-double threat nightly. The Raptors have some talent on the bench as Greivis Vasquez is more than capable of running the offense with the second unit, Louis Williams is a veteran with scoring potential, and Patrick Patterson and Tyler Hansbrough can work the glass with Patterson also able to stretch the floor.
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The Oklahoma City Thunder are 2-2 to start preseason play after getting smoked on Thursday night 120-86 by the Pelicans. The Thunder are playing without Kevin Durant who underwent successful surgery on his right foot but will miss at least six weeks of action according to early speculation. PG Russell Westbrook didn’t suit up last night which should mean there’s a good chance of him playing somewhere between 15-25 minutes against the Raptors. C Steven Adams has been the preseason star for the Thunder as he makes the case for the starting job over Kendrick Perkins, entering this game with double digit points, at least five rebounds, and at least one block in all four games. Serge Ibaka hasn’t seen action yet and Reggie Jackson has a wrist injury, leaving the burden on some relatively inexperienced players like Jeremy Lamb and Perry Jones to produce in these exhibition games.
The line has yet to be released but it will be tough not to take the Raptors with the Thunder off a back-to-back and facing some key absences. Please check back later or follow me on Twitter @_BrianFitz_ for an update on my free pick for this game.