Utah Jazz vs. Oklahoma City Thunder - 10/30/13
Oklahoma City Thunder (60-22) at Utah Jazz (43-39)
NBA Basketball: Wednesday, October 30, 2013 at 9:00 pm (EnergySolutions Arena)
The Line: Utah Jazz 6 -- Over/Under: 196 See the Latest Odds
Kevin Durant and the Oklahoma City Thunder travel to Salt Lake City to take on the Utah Jazz on Wednesday night.
Head to head, the Thunder are 7-2-1 ATS in the last 10 meetings and 12-4 ATS in the last 16 meetings in Utah, while the home team is 5-1 ATS in the last 6 meetings and the favorite is 5-2-1 ATS in the last 8 meetings.
After missing out on the final playoff spot by a single game, the Utah Jazz faced some tough decisions this offseason with four of its starters hitting free agency. Do they re-sign the likes of Al Jefferson and Paul Millsap or let them walk and hand the keys to their young core? The Jazz choose the latter and as a result, are expected to finish near the bottom of the Western Conference standings this season. As bad as that sounds, it was the right move for a Utah squad that has an abundance of young talent on the roster, highlighted by Derrick Favors and Gordon Hayward. And if the Jazz are as bad as expected, that roster will only improve if they manage to snag a high draft pick in this stacked upcoming draft.
Mark D. Smith-USA TODAY Sports
While several of the West’s upper echelon teams improved their rosters over the summer (Los Angeles Clippers, Houston Rockets, Golden State Warriors,) the same can’t be said for the Oklahoma City Thunder, who has some serious question marks heading into this season. With Russell Westbrook still out injured and the departure of Kevin Martin, who was the main piece they got back in the James Harden trade at the start of last season, the Thunder will rely on Kevin Durant more than ever to carry them, especially until Westbrook returns. Even with his return, it remains to be seen if they alone can get them out of a Western Conference that is once again loaded.
There’s no denying the Jazz are going to be one of the worst teams in the West this season, but I still like them getting points against the Thunder in this one. You have to remember, the Jazz are still going to be a tough out at home this season, always have been and always will be. Kevin Durant should go off in this one (jump on any prop bets with Durant scoring total,) but I still think Utah can and will cover the number….