The 2017-18 regular season opens up on Thursday (8 PM EST) for both the Knicks and Thunder in a matchup taking place at Chesapeake Energy Arena in Oklahoma City.

Oklahoma City has their eyes on the prize this season after acquiring both Paul George and Carmelo Anthony this offseason via trade to add alongside reigning MVP Russell Westbrook. New York doesn't have nearly the high hopes that the Thunder have but do provide some talented young pieces which include Kristaps Porzingis, Frank Ntilikina, Tim Hardaway Jr., Willy Hernangomez, and Enes Kanter.

Projected starting lineups

Knicks projected starters: PG - Ramon Sessions, SG - Tim Hardaway Jr., SF - Courtney Lee, PF - Kristaps Porzingis, C - Enes Kanter

Thunder projected starters: PG - Russell Westbrook, SG - Andre Roberson, SF - Paul George, PF - Carmelo Anthony, C - Steven Adams

Knicks see a familiar face in Melo

After 6.5 seasons as a member of the Knicks, Carmelo Anthony's first regular season game wearing an Oklahoma City jersey will be against his former team from the Big Apple.

In 412 games with the Knicks, Anthony posted per game averages of 24.7 points, 7.0 rebounds, and 3.2 assists per game. He was named to six All-Star teams with New York and won the NBA scoring title in the 2012-13 season.

His 10,186 points scored with the club rank seventh in franchise history.

None of those Knicks teams had quite the firepower that this Oklahoma City team has though. Russell Westbrook is coming off a season in which he became the second player alongside Oscar Robertson to average a triple-double. He also won his second scoring title in the past three seasons.

Paul George averaged a career-high 23.7 points per game in 2016-17 with the Indiana Pacers while shooting career-bests from the field (46.1%) and the free throw line (89.8%).

All eyes on KP6

With Anthony traded to the Thunder, NBA observers and Knicks fans will want to see what Kristaps Porzingis can do as the focal point of the offense.

Entering his third season and just 22 years old, a lot of pressure will be on the player previously dubbed as the "Unicorn" by Kevin Durant this season.

Porzingis appeared in 66 games last season, averaging 18.1 points, 7.2 rebounds, and 2.0 blocks per game. He provides outside shooting never seen before from a man his height (7-3) as he shot 35.7% on threes in 2016-17 on 4.8 attempts per game.

Those scoring totals could easily go up this season with Anthony and Derrick Rose no longer on the team. Porzingis has been dealing with hip soreness that caused him to miss some preseason action, but he will be ready to go Thursday. This is a season where very few, if any, basketball prognosticators are predicting the Knicks to reach the playoffs.

Fans want to see Porzingis make that jump towards superstardom to help make the future seem brighter than it has in quite some time.

History of Knicks/Thunder

Since Oklahoma City became a franchise in the 2008-09 season after moving from Seattle, they have a 12-5 advantage over the Knicks in head-to-head matchups. New York is just 2-7 in games played at Chesapeake Energy Arena.

The Thunder prevailed in both games played between the two teams last season. On November 28, 2016, Oklahoma City defeated the Knicks 112-103 in a game where Russell Westbrook finished with 27 points, 17 rebounds, and 14 assists. In their second matchup on February 15, 2017, the Thunder won by the score of 116-105. Westbrook was even more dominant in that one scoring 38 points, grabbing 14 rebounds, and dishing out 12 assists.