Jazz vs. Thunder Prediction
The Utah Jazz couldn't build off their fast start in Game 1 at the Oklahoma City Thunder as the underdog failed to record the upset. Can Utah reverse their fortunes and even the series at a game apiece when play resumes tonight?
519 Utah Jazz at 520 Oklahoma City Thunder
Wednesday, April 18, 2018
Chesapeake Energy Arena at 8PM ET
Public Betting Information
According to oddsmakers at YouWager, the Thunder are a 4-point favorite on the spread line. The over-under sits at 206.5 points. As of Wednesday morning, 70 percent of public bets are pouring in on the host Thunder. Check out our NBA Public Betting Page for the latest information.
Mitchell doesn't play like rookie
It's been clear all season that Utah got the biggest steal of the draft when the Nuggets sent the 13th pick in Donovan Mitchell their way in exchange for Tyler Lydon. Mitchell averaged over 21 points per game this season and in most years would be a shoo-in for Rookie of the Year, but probably not one where Ben Simmons also exists. Mitchell made his playoff debut Sunday night and was fantastic, scoring 27 points to go with 10 rebounds and three assists in the 116-108 loss. He was efficient in making 11 of his 22 shots, including 3-of-7 from 3-point range. No one else on the Jazz scored more than 14 (Rudy Gobert), so finding some help for Mitchell in Game 2 is a must for the Jazz.
George pours in 38
Paul George showed exactly why the Thunder traded for him last summer as he scored 38 points, hitting a playoff career-high 8-of-11 3-pointers and adding seven rebounds. Utah led 16-4 in the first quarter, but it was a tie game before the quarter ended. George then proceeded to take over as the Thunder kept their home-court advantage intact through Game 1. On the season, George averaged 21.9 points along with 5.7 rebounds and 3.3 assists. He shot 40.1 percent from 3-point range and had a PER of 18.71. While he might top his Game 1 performance the rest of the series, he is certainly going to be a main counterpart to Russell Westbrook.
NBA Betting Trends
Utah is 1-5 ATS in its last six meetings in Oklahoma City. The over is 7-0 in the last seven Utah games following an ATS loss.
The Thunder are 6-2 ATS in the last eight meetings. The under is 21-8 in the last 29 meetings.
Utah has been one of the biggest surprises of the NBA season and it had OKC flummoxed early, but let the hosts off the hook. I think the Jazz have the right formula to even the series at a game apiece here. Utah is balanced usually, so don't expect Mitchell to have to carry the load quite as much in Game 2. And the Jazz defense typically steps it up a notch in important games. This classifies as such. Take the Jazz here.
NBA DAILY PREDICTION: UTAH JAZZ +4