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Thunder Mavericks Betting – Dallas Reasserts Itself While Oklahoma City Stumbles

Posted by Craig Parsons on 2/6/2014 9:42:44 PM

The Western Conference finals took a significant turn on Saturday night in Oklahoma City. The Thunder had a chance to consolidate momentum but instead fell flat on their home floor.

(4) Oklahoma City Thunder vs. (3) Dallas Mavericks – Mavericks Lead Series, 2-1

With NBA online sports betting experts looking on, the Oklahoma City Thunder had an opportunity to transform this best-of-seven series and take a huge step toward the franchise’s first NBA Finals appearance. The Thunder held off the Dallas Mavericks Thursday night in Dallas, swiping Game 2 as head coach Scott Brooks boldly – and correctly – benched starting point guard Russell Westbrook in the fourth quarter. The move took a lot of guts because of Westbrook’s prominence, not to mention the UCLA product’s combination of blazing quickness and evident playmaking skills. Sitting Westbrook for not passing the ball enough, especially in tandem with superstar Kevin Durant, had been limiting the Thunder’s effectiveness at the offensive end of the floor. Brooks’ act was a statement that one man was not bigger than the team. The fact that the move led to a 106-100 win for Oklahoma City was certainly a telling indication that the move worked. However, the message transcended one game and one night. The point of the move by Brooks was to permanently alter the way Westbrook approached the sport. Oklahoma City needed Westbrook to be more of a distributor and less of an obstacle to the team’s own halfcourt offense. If Westbrook took his benching like a man and learned the lessons that were waiting to be gathered, the Thunder stood to reap the benefits in Game 3, using Game 2 as a catapult to a series advantage. Everything was in place for the Thunder, playing at home in this Red River hoops rivalry, to put Dallas on the ropes and become a more complete team in the process.,

Instead, Oklahoma City and Westbrook regressed, doing something that would be easily recognizable to MLB baseball betting gurus who watch the Chicago Cubs implode every season. Despite having the talent to do big things, the Thunder – so much like the recent versions of the Cubs – plummeted in the face of pressure. Oklahoma City suffered a damaging 93-87 loss to Dallas on Saturday night at home, as Westbrook’s 30 points – 13 of which came at the foul line – were much too little and much too late. Westbrook piled up the points in the fourth quarter, but he sabotaged and hijacked his team’s offense in the first three quarters of play. Oklahoma City developed no rhythm and didn’t even bother to try to run structured sets. Durant didn’t get many touches, and with James Harden being held in check by the Mavericks’ wing defenders, nobody for the Thunder played a particularly crisp offensive game.

If you want to understand why sports betting students are clearly favoring the Mavericks at this point in time, just consider this pair of stats: After Game 3, Westbrook has 11 assists and 15 turnovers, while his counterpart – Dallas point guard Jason Kidd – owns 26 assists compared to just six turnovers. That’s your story, and that’s why Dallas won Game 3 despite a ho-hum 18 points from Dirk Nowitzki. Just imagine what will happen when Nowitzki regains his A-game. This is now Dallas’ series to lose once again, thanks in large part to Russell Westbrook.

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