I was informed by a Thunder staffer earlier this week that the team would not arrive back home from their latest west coast trip till the early morning hours on Thanksgiving day. A journey made rougher after Wednesday's shellacking at the hands of the Portland Trailblazers.
If Billy Donovan and his staff are looking for that elusive silver lining in this grey cloud, how bout this? The New Orleans Pelicans losers of three straight are the Thunder's next two opponents. Ok, just because the Pelicans are on the skids, it doesn't guarantee the Thunder a win. Oklahoma City did have to score the 13 unanswered points to pull one out against a 4-15 Golden State and Portland is 4-6 in their last 10 and put up 136 on the Thunder.
For Billy Donovan, Friday is another chance to get his team to play with a sense of urgency. The Thunder found themselves down 10-2 at the start of Wednesday's loss. Such deficits are all too common, Donovan can put as many combinations on the floor as he likes, but you have to wonder if his message can get through to a roster full of players that could be on the move.
When looking at this matchup with New Orleans, the last time these two met on November 2nd the Thunder came away with a 115-104 win. Shai Gilgeous-Alexander had a game-high 23, while Darius Bazley had his coming-out party scoring 17 off the bench and going 3 of 6 from beyond the arc. The Pelicans are coming off a 114-110 loss to the Lakers in Antony Davis's return to the Big Easy. Prior to losing their last three, the Pelicans won three straight against, The Warriors, Portland, and Phoenix.
Tipoff is at 7 on NBA TV, Fox Sports Oklahoma, 98.1 WWLS and 97.1 The Sports Animal Tulsa.