What a series we have on our hands between the Portland Trail Blazers and Oklahoma City Thunder. Before this clash, the Thunder were overwhelmingly picked as the favorites, with 19 of ESPN’s panel of 20 thought that Oklahoma would scoop up this first round series with ease. Portland currently leads 2-0.
It all stems from Portland’s scoring, and Damian Lillard and C.J. McCollum have caught fire in both games. On Tuesday night the pair scored 62 points between each other and the team shot 13-32 (40.6%) from 3-point range. While Russell Westbrook and the Thunder just can’t find their groove with 5-28 (17.9%) from 3.
Westbrook is leading this slump by scoring just 14 points on Tuesday night. Only 5 of his 20 shots found the bottom of the net and that’s just not good enough for Russ. The Thunder did sweep the Blazers in the regular season and seemed to have the idea in shutting down Dame and CJ. But so far, the pair has a combined average of 58 points per game with 45.5 percent from the 3-point range. That speaks to a lack of pressure from this Thunder team.
Westbrook and Lillard famously don’t get along, though Lillard has clearly gotten the better of the matchup. To me, this clip sums up the last 2 games perfectly, but remember we’re only 2 games in with plenty of basketball left. The series heads to Oklahoma City on Friday night and if Portland can hold this shooting hot streak, they’re destined for the next round.
Catch you Monday.