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Warriors-Thunder Game 2 Recap

The Golden State Warriors answered their Game 1 loss at the hands of the Oklahoma City Thunder with a near wire-to-wire blowout in Game 2 as the teams head back to Chesapeake Energy Arena.

Jabari Davis

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The Golden State Warriors responded to their series-opening loss with an all-out drubbing of the Oklahoma City Thunder by a score of 118-91 in Game 2, tying the series at 1-1 as the teams head to Chesapeake Energy Arena for Game 3 (Sunday, 5 p.m. EST) and Game 4 (Tuesday, 6 p.m. EST).

Game 2 between the Warriors and Thunder picked up just where the last meeting left off with both teams playing at a very high level and finding ways to respond to each run by the other.

Kevin Durant was absolutely phenomenal for the Thunder once again in the first half. Durant scored 23 points on 9-13 from the field and grabbed four rebounds and a steal. Golden State may have a ton of perimeter options to throw at him defensively, but Durant was scoring at will on Wednesday night. Following a 10-30 shooting night in the series opener, the Thunder coaching staff deserves credit for finding sets and plays to make things easier for Durant, who should get a nod for simply making shots that wouldn’t fall the previous game. He does need to cut back on his turnovers, finishing with a game-high eight.

A Draymond Green driving layup over the outstretched arms of Steven Adams gave the Warriors a 41-36 advantage just before the midway point in the second quarter. Russell Westbrook appeared to be relatively quiet in the first half as Durant paced much of the action, but he did have nine points and eight assists during the first 24 minutes of the game. His find of Dion Waiters for a three-pointer along the baseline gave OKC its first lead (47-46) of the contest with two minutes left in the second quarter.

A nine-point spree by Andre Iguodala in the second and a Klay Thompson three-pointer helped the Warriors regain control of the game (57-49) as Golden State finished the half on an 8-0 run.

Adams was able to get things going in the second half with a couple early buckets, but the Warriors responded with a Harrison Barnes three and a 16-point run by Stephen Curry to extend the lead to 79-61. Curry may very well still be something less than 100 percent in terms of his health, but runs like that are precisely what make him so tough. He ended up with 17 points in the quarter, but also looked to attack and facilitate once he got going. It truly becomes a choice of picking your poison after those runs, as the threat of Curry’s shot-making combined with his handles and willingness to create for others really opens the entire floor for his teammates.

Durant had been phenomenal in the first half, but neither he nor Westbrook were able to produce in the third quarter and the Warriors took a 20-point lead (88-68) heading into the fourth quarter. Durant did finish with 29 points on 11-18 from the field (along with the aforementioned eight turnovers), but the Thunder couldn’t quite match the energy Golden State brought across the board in a game the Warriors absolutely needed to win.

Game 3 Prediction: The Thunder may be heading to OKC with home-court advantage in the series, but they know as well as anyone else these Warriors can also return the favor on the road. Westbrook and Durant can be counted upon for their general greatness, but the Thunder will need tremendous efforts from their supporting cast (once again) in order to maintain the home-court over the next couple games. We believe the Warriors keep the momentum going and increase the pressure on OKC by taking Game 3 on the road.

Jabari Davis is a senior NBA Writer and Columnist for Basketball Insiders, covering the Pacific Division and NBA Social Media activity.

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Legacy

Looking For A Few Great Voices!

From time to time we have open chairs at Basketball Insiders for writers looking to gain experience, grow their brand and to be part of an aggressive up-tempo content team.

Basketball Insiders

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From time to time we have open chairs at Basketball Insiders for writers looking to gain experience, grow their brand and to be part of an aggressive up-tempo content team.

We are considering adding new voices for the 2020-21 NBA Season, and what we are looking for is very specific.

Here are the criteria:
– A body of professional work that reflects an understanding of the NBA and basketball.
– Must live within 30 minutes of an NBA team.
– Must be willing to write two to three times per week on various topics as assigned.
– Must write in AP style and meet assigned deadlines.
– Be willing to appear in Podcasts and Video projects as needed and scheduled.
– Have a strong understanding of social media and its role in audience development.
– Be willing to work in a demanding virtual team environment.

Some things to know and consider:
– We are not hiring full-time people. If you are seeking a full-time gig, this is not that.
– This will be a low or non-compensation role initially. We need to understand your value and fit.
– We have a long track record of creating opportunities for those that excel in our program.
– This will be a lengthy interview and evaluation process. We take this very seriously, so should you.
– If you are not committed to being great, this is not the right situation for you.

If you are interested, please follow these specific instructions, Drop us an e-mail with:

Your Name:

The NBA Market You Live Near:

And Why We Should Consider You:

We do not need your resume, but a few links to work you have done under the above information would be helpful.

Please send all of this to: openings2021@basketballinsiders.com

 

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Headlines

#17 – Aleksej Pokusevski – Oklahoma City Thunder

David Yapkowitz

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With the 17th pick in the 2020 NBA Draft, the Oklahoma City Thunder select Aleksej Pokusevski from Serbia. The Thunder completed a trade with the Minnesota Timberwolves to acquire the pick.

Pokusevski is a long term project, but one that has has an intriguing skillset. A 7-footer with good speed and quickness, Pokusevski plays like a wing and can pass like a guard. But, to truly thrive at the next level, Pokusevski will need to put on some serious weight.

Again, he’s a project. But Pokusevski’s ceiling is sky-high. And, with a rebuild ahead of them, the Thunder have more than enough time to work with him and ensure he reaches it.

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Mock Drafts

2020 NBA Mock Draft – The Final 60-Pick Mock

What a long and winding road the 20201 NBA Draft has been. While this draft cycle has seen its ups and down, the moment of truth if finally upon us.

Steve Kyler

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What a long and winding road the 20201 NBA Draft has been. While this draft cycle has seen its ups and down, the moment of truth if finally upon us.

Here is a final look at the 2020 Draft, and how it may play out in this final 60-pick Mock Draft of the 20202 NBA Draft process:

 

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