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Winning on the road is next hurdle for Thunder

BY MIKE BALDWIN Published: January 21, 2009

A recent string of wins primarily has been at the Ford Center other than an overtime win at Chicago. Can they carry that momentum onto the road?

Veteran point guard Earl Watson said Hubie Brown, his coach at Memphis, then a playoff team, set a goal of finishing .500 or better on the road. That’s too lofty for this team, but Watson said recent improvement should lead to more road wins.

"In the NBA it’s rare to get a college-like atmosphere on the road like you get in Oklahoma City,” Watson said. "The key on the road is being focused and taking teams out what they’re comfortable with. Every team is different... You try and take away what they do best.”

Coach Scott Brooks said playing solid defense for 48 minutes is the key regardless of where games are played.

"There’s no simple solution,” Brooks said. "You have to do the same things you do at home on the road. You’re not in a comfortable environment, usually in front of a hostile crowd. ... The key is you have to get stops and have a defensive mindset.”

Home vs. Away

Pts. Opp. FG% FT% REB TO
95.5 102.3 45.0 75.8 43.3 17.1

Pts. Opp. FG% FT% REB. TO
95.2 102.3 44.1 76.7 41.7 15.7
Thunder at Warriors
When: 9:30 tonight

Where: ORACLE Arena, Oakland, Calif.

TV: Fox Sports-Oklahoma (Cox 37)

Radio: WWLS 98.1-FM, 640-AM

Live blog:

Three things to know
→ The Thunder is 1-1 against Golden State.

→ The Warriors rank second in the league in scoring at 107 points per game but allow a league-worst 112 points per contest.

→ Tonight’s game is the fifth in a season-long seven-game home stand for Golden State.

Probable starters

Thunder (8-34)
Pos. Player Ht. Pts. Reb. Ast
G Russell Westbrook 6-3 14.1 4.3 4.9
G Desmond Mason 6-5 1.1
F Kevin Durant 6-9 24.1 6.2 2.5
F Jeff Green 6-9 16.2 6.4 1.9
C Nick Collison 6-10 7.7 6.3 0.9
Warriors (13-29)
G Jamal Crawford 6-5 20.7 3.0 5.0
G Stephen Jackson 6-8 19.4 4.6 5.9
F Kelenna Azubuike 6-5 13.8 4.8 1.5
F Anthony Randolph 6-10 5.7 4.2 0.6
C Andris Biedrins 6-11 13.7 12.0 2.2


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