The OKC Thunder travel to the Sunshine State to face the Orlando Magic for the second time in the 2020-21 NBA season. The Magic defeated the Thunder in their previous matchup (118-107) on 30th December 2020.
The red hot Orlando Magic come into this game with four wins and one loss, tied for the best record in the East.
Meanwhile, the OKC Thunder find themselves at the bottom end of the Western Conference with one win and three back-to-back losses.
Fixture: OKC Thunder vs Orlando Magic - NBA Season 2020-21.
Date & Time: Saturday, January 2nd, 2021 7:00 PM ET. (Sunday 5:30 AM IST)
Venue: Amway Center, Orlando, Florida
OKC Thunder Preview
The OKC Thunder fell to another defeat in their previous game against the New Orleans Pelicans. They are now holding one of the worst records in the league. The Thunder come into this game ranking 29th in scoring offense with 101.2 points per game.
While the team has six players averaging in double digits, it hasn't translated into victories. The side is led by shooting guard, Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, who is averaging 19.5 points, 6.8 assists, and 5.3 rebounds in 33.3 minutes per game.
The Thunder face the daunting task of matching up with a Magic team that is firing on all cylinders. To steal this one, the OKC Thunder will need more firepower on the offensive end and big performances from role players.
Key Player - Shai Gilgeous-Alexander
Shai Gilgeous-Alexander is undoubtedly the best player from the OKC Thunder this season. He is playing an all-around game with contributions on both ends of the floor and is shooting 45.9% from the field and 31.8% from the deep.
Coming into this matchup, Gilgeous-Alexander is the Thunders' best bet to heat up on the offensive end and give them a fighting chance against the surging Orlando Magic.
OKC Thunder Predicted Lineup
G George Hill, G Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, F Justin Jackson, F Al Horford, C Isiah Roby
Orlando Magic Preview
The Orlando Magic are coming into this matchup with their first loss of the season against the Philadelphia 76ers. The Magic were hammered in the first half and did not have a reply for the rest of the game.
They will look to put that behind them and aim to get back on track by sweeping their season series against a struggling Thunder side.
The Orlando Magic are 11th in offense with 114.6 points per game and 9th in rebounding with 46.8 rebounds per game this season.
Terrence Ross leads their side in scoring with 21 points off 51% shooting from the floor and 43.5% shooting from deep. Look out for him to take charge offensively and deliver another win for the home team.
Key Player - Nikola Vucevic
Nikola Vucevic is having a fantastic season so far and is proving himself to be one of the best centers in the league today. He has been the driving force behind the Magics' success this season and will play a vital role in this matchup as well.
Vucevic stretches the floor with his shooting and racks up the boards with his rebounding prowess. His season averages are 19.8 points, 11.2 rebounds, and 3.6 assists in 30.2 minutes per game. Vucevic is shooting 49.4% from the floor and 46.2% from beyond the arc.
Orlando Magic Predicted Lineup
G Markelle Fultz, G Evan Fournier, F Dwayne Bacon, F Aaron Gordon, C Nikola Vucevic
Thunder vs Magic Match Prediction
The Orlando Magic are the heavy favorites to win their matchup against the OKC Thunder. The possibility of this game going down to the wire is slim. In fact, this one has all the makings of a blowout.
Where to watch Thunder vs Magic?
Local coverage of the game will be available on Fox Sports Florida and Fox Sports Oklahoma. You can also live stream the same via the NBA League Pass.Published 02 Jan 2021, 23:11 IST