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Thunder guard Luguentz Dort downgraded to out vs. Grizzlies

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Thunder guard Luguentz Dort downgraded to out vs. Grizzlies
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Oklahoma City Thunder guard Luguentz Dort (left knee contusion) has been downgraded to out for Wednesday night’s away game against the Memphis Grizzlies. It will be the first game he’s missed this season.

In addition to Dort, fifth-year forward Kenrich Williams (right knee sprain) will not be available as well. Of course, the only other player listed on the injury report is Chet Holmgren, who is out for the season after suffering a Lisfranc injury during the offseason.

A few NBA betting sites are giving the Thunder the fifth-lowest odds to win the championship in 2023. But the playoffs are not out of the question. They are currently 11-13 and rank 12th in the Western Conference.

Additionally, through 24 starts this season, Dort is averaging 14.2 points, 4.6 rebounds, 2.3 assists, and 1.2 steals. Plus, he’s shooting 32% from three-point range and a career-best 40.5% from the floor.

For other in-depth statistics, Dort is posting a career-high player efficiency rating of 12.5. On Nov. 13, in Oklahoma City’s 145-135 win over the New York Knicks, the guard scored a season-high 24 points in 25 minutes of action.

Thunder guard Luguentz Dort has been downgraded to out against the Grizzlies for Wednesday night’s matchup

In July, the guard re-signed with the Thunder on a five-year, $87.5 million deal. Without Dort, it will only make it more challenging on Oklahoma City and the NBA Most Improved Player of the Year favorite, Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, to upset the Grizzlies at FedExForum.

On Monday, the Thunder defeated the Atlanta Hawks 121-114 on the road. They outscored Atlanta 37-26 in the fourth quarter. The team overcame a 14-point deficit in the third quarter. Gilgeous-Alexander led Oklahoma City in scoring with 35 points.

“Try to be aggressive, I try not to seek them too much, just play aggressive basketball and then when the opportunity presents itself, I like to get there,” Gilgeous-Alexander said after the win.

“Unfortunately, I didn’t get there in the first half and I knew that going into halftime that I was going to try to get there in the second half for sure.”

Besides losing a game every here and there, in their last three contests, the Thunder have outscored their opponents 106-68 in the fourth quarter. It was Oklahoma City’s first win in Atlanta since March 2018.

Meanwhile, the Grizzlies have three players listed as probable: Ja Morant (ankle), John Konchar (toe), and Ziaire Williams (knee). Morant and Konchar are expected to play.

However, 14-year veteran Danny Green (knee) was downgraded to out for Memphis. Rookie wing Jake LaRavia (foot) is listed as doubtful. Also, Desmond Bane remains out indefinitely due to a toe injury.

Per ESPN’s Basketball Power Index, the Grizzlies have an 81% chance of defeating the Thunder at home. Oklahoma City is an eight-point road underdog.

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James is a Basketball Insiders contributor. He earned his bachelor's degree in English and Creative Writing at Southern New Hampshire University. James enjoys watching sports and helping gamblers win money.

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