Unfortunately for OKC, the Thunder find themselves back on the court this afternoon after getting blown out last night. That has us looking Sacramento’s way in our NBA betting picks below.
The NBA did the Oklahoma City Thunder no favors on Super Bowl weekend. The young contenders lost on Saturday in a blowout to the Mavericks and now, not even 24 hours later, they have to host the Sacramento Kings.
No offense to any Oklahoma City fans, but hosting a home game on Super Bowl Sunday feels like a diminished advantage. Paycom Center will be a bit less thunderous today, if granting the pun.
Among other reasons, that instills faith in Sacramento in our free NBA picks and predictions as we preview Kings vs. Thunder on February 11, with tip set for 3:00 p.m. ET.
Kings vs Thunder odds
Kings vs Thunder predictions
Both the Sacramento Kings and Oklahoma City Thunder are relatively new to the contention scene. Just two years ago, they finished 12th and 14th in the Western Conference, respectively. Then last season, The Beam finished No. 3 in the West, and OKC landed in the play-in.
In that timeline, it warrants notice that the Kings have won eight straight against the Thunder, including five games since the start of last season.
Sacramento was an underdog only once in those five, but it led wire-to-wire in that upset in early November. Two of those five games came on the road for the Kings, the two biggest margins of victory in this recent stretch.
Sacramento simply has Oklahoma City’s number.
That should continue this afternoon, in part because of the Thunder’s unfortunate scheduling worries. Playing a back-to-back this weekend makes no sense and is simply the latest example of the NBA reducing its product regularly.
Oklahoma City has been in a lull lately, anyway, on a two-game losing streak and going just 1-6 against the spread in its last seven games, the sole ATS victory coming against the spiraling Hornets.
An apparent edge in this matchup in general, a scheduling advantage and a better trend line may be enough reasons to back the Kings today, but to add on top of those, they are simply a rough matchup when already tired.
Looking at the last 10 games to have pertinent context, the Thunder play at a middling pace, No. 21 in the league. The Kings play at the seventh-fastest pace. They should outrun Oklahoma City early and often and then rely on fatigue to hold on for a win.
Sacramento’s long winning streak in this matchup furthers confidence in the bold decision to take an upright upset and not merely a cover against the spread.
My best bet: Kings moneyline (+136 at FanDuel)
Kings vs Thunder same-game parlay
No one on an NBA roster enjoys playing in the afternoon. While it’s a mild surprise the NBA insists on playing games before the Super Bowl, it’s not a surprise at all that it does not play at the same time as the Super Bowl. Paycom Center would be nearly empty.
NBA players are used to games ending well into the night and then needing a few hours to decompress. They then usually have morning obligations. Afternoon naps help even out this wear.
But not today. The Kings and the Thunder need to be alert and ready to go in the middle of the afternoon. For OKC, in particular, this is the second straight day of this nuisance.
Expect some doldrums to show up today, some stretches of sloppiness, some weary legs.
Gilgeous-Alexander usually shines against Sacramento, averaging 37.5 points in his four games against the Kings since the start of last season, never scoring fewer than 33 in that stretch, but it’s that exact success that should lead to some doubt in the MVP candidate today.
Sacramento knows it struggles against Oklahoma City’s young star. It may focus on him today, a cause helped by the afternoon back-to-back.
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Kings vs Thunder spread and Over/Under analysis
This spread opened with the Thunder favored by four after it was blown out by the Mavericks. That fell to -3.5 by the end of the evening, touching -3 momentarily. It solidified at -3 on Sunday morning, though there is no indication OKC will be shorthanded today on the back-to-back.
The total opened at 237.5, quickly climbed to 238 on Saturday night, and then found 240 as Saturday became Sunday. As the Thunder have struggled the last two weeks, they’ve hit the Over in four straight games, clearing those pregame totals by an average of 13.5 points.
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Kings vs Thunder betting trend to know
Sacramento is 16-10-1 ATS on the road this season, including 8-2-1 in its last 11 road games. Find more NBA betting trends for Kings vs. Thunder.
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Kings vs Thunder game info
|Paycom Center, Oklahoma City, OK
|Sunday, February 11, 2024
|3:00 p.m. ET
|NBCS-California, Bally Sports Oklahoma
Kings vs Thunder latest injuries
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