|Written by Michael|
Bet on the NBAThe Oklahoma City Thunder was very close to getting the top seed in the West but was still able to get a strong second thanks to the team's 47-19 record. The Thunder will be starting their first round series on Saturday against the 36-30 Dallas Mavericks.
The Mavericks will be looking to repeat as NBA champions while the Thunder will be looking for the franchise's first title since 1979 when they were the Seattle SuperSonics. Oklahoma City had a 3-1 advantage in games with Dallas in the regular season. They last played in early March.
The Thunder's Kevin Durant won the NBA's basketball gambling regular season scoring title by getting 28 points per game. Durant had his best scoring month in April when he had 29.2 points per game. He also got nearly ninety percent of his free throws in April as well.
Russell Westbrook has 23.6 points per game for the Thunder as well. However, James Harden is expected to miss most of this series. Harden, who is one of the top bench scorers in the league with 16.8 per game, has been cleared to practice after passing concussion tests recently. It's unclear as to when he'll be able to fully come back and actually play.
The Dallas Mavericks' Jason Kidd will be able to start in the series. Kidd was day-to-day recently but is clear to play again. Kidd has 6.2 points per game this year but had 8.5 per game in April. He also leads the team in assists and steals.
Vince Carter has been more prominent for the Mavs in recent weeks and could make a difference in this first round series. Carter is playing in more minutes and has gotten his scoring average back over ten per game. Dirk Nowitzki has been consistent throughout the season and reached forty points in a game for just the second time this year. Nowitzki has 21.6 points per game.
Oklahoma City has the best odds among all teams in the West to win the NBA title. The Thunder has 15/4 odds for winning it all. The Mavs are down at 33/1 to repeat this season.