From Jan. 6-Jan. 12, there are 25 NBA games that will air on national TV, but there are a number of other can't miss games throughout the week that can only be found on NBA League Pass.
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For the Oklahoma City Thunder, who are this week's team to watch, to the biggest matchups throughout the week, check below for the week ahead on NBA League Pass.
All times Eastern.
Team to watch: Oklahoma City Thunder
Monday, Jan. 6 at Philadelphia, 7:00 p.m. | Tuesday, Jan. 7 at Brooklyn, 7:30 p.m. | Thursday, Jan 9 vs. Houston, 9:30 p.m. (on TSN5) | Saturday, Jan. 11 vs. LA Lakers
The Oklahoma City Thunder are hot right now.
After winning five straight and 14 of their last 18, OKC enters the week with a 20-15 record and has made its first appearance in the top-10 of our power rankings. For these reasons and others, the Thunder have been one of the biggest surprises of the 2019-20 NBA.
But should it really be that surprising?
This roster is made up of a number of players that have demonstrated an ability to execute their roles to perfection for this team, beginning with the backcourt of Chris Paul and Shai Gilgeous-Alexander.
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Paul, 34, has seemingly turned back the clock a few years, as he has posted averages of 16.3 points, 6.6 assists and 4.9 rebounds in under 32 minutes per contest. Even more impressive is that through 35 games, the 15-year veteran leads the NBA in total points scored during clutch time with 93.
When the game is on the line, the ball will likely be in the hands of Paul or Gilgeous-Alexander, who is eighth in the league with 61 total clutch points.
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Clutch scoring is just one part of the growth of Gilgeous-Alexander, who is blossoming into a legitimate star in this league. In his second season, the 21-year-old Canadian is averaging a team-high 19.9 points per game and has already scored a career-high 32 points three times this season.
It's only a matter of time before he surpasses that mark.
In the frontcourt, Danilo Gallinari and Steven Adams have also executed their roles, which comes as no surprise considering their respective standings as established veterans in the league.
Gallinari's 18.0 points per game are good for third-best on the team and he leads the Thunder in 3-pointers made (2.9 per game) and 3-point percentage (39.3%) while Adams is essentially averaging a double-double with 11.6 points and 9.9 rebounds per contest; he's recorded 13 double-doubles so far this season.
The Thunder's reserve unit is led by Dennis Schröder, who is averaging 18.5 points per game and often finds himself alongside Paul and Gilgeous-Alexander during the waning moments of games. Schröder is making a great case to be in the conversation for Sixth Man of the Year and adds an extremely crucial dynamic to this Thunder team.
Leading the charge is Billy Donovan, who was recently named Coach of the Month in December.
NBA Coaches of the Month for December!- NBA (@NBA) January 2, 2020
East: Mike Budenholzer (@Bucks)
West: Billy Donovan (@okcthunder) pic.twitter.com/wnQ2MLZhtn
With the team's success after an offseason of complete change, Donovan will very likely begin to receive some traction for Coach of the Year, especially given their standing as a playoff contender.
As the battle for the West's eighth seed intensifies among teams below .500, OKC has all but solidified itself as a playoff team that will finish seventh at worst. Now, the focus shifts to moving up and jockeying for position in the West and they'll have a few tests this upcoming week to reinforce their legitimacy.
The Thunder open up the week with a back-to-back beginning in Philadelphia against a 76ers team that has lost four straight. OKC will then travel to Brooklyn to take on the Nets, who entered the week on a five-game losing streak.
To close the week, the Thunder return home to first host the Houston Rockets in what will be an emotional return to Chesapeake Energy Arena for 2017 league MVP Russell Westbrook. That one will air live on TSN5 but replays can be found on League Pass. Two days later, OKC hosts LeBron James, Anthony Davis and the Lakers, who they have already taken to the wire twice this season.
Catch that and more on NBA League Pass!
Other notable games around the league
Monday, Jan. 6
Tuesday, Jan. 7
Wednesday, Jan. 8
Friday, Jan. 10
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