Obviously, they have a shot... but man. The Spurs look unbeatable.
KD has hit 3 game winners in the playoffs and Westbrook has 3 turnovers in 4 games against the Lakers. THREE. He often had that in a quarter in the regular season.
I have a feeling it only goes five games though. Six max. Hope I'm wrong.
Is Kevin Durant still playing?
I love OKC, and when their shots are falling no one can beat them, no one. But when the playoffs started I picked San Antonio in 7 over OKC because the Spurs can pound in inside as well as shoot, and they play pretty good defense. The ppg allowed is misleading because they play at such a high pace, but with their depth and experience, I expect them to outlast OKC and ultimatly win the tittle. I predicted the Spurs would beat the Heat in the Finals, but now I really think that unless OKC or San Antonio is reallly gassed, they should be able to beat anyone in the Finals, even the Heat.
Kenny Smith made a good point about the Spurs. They find what you love to do as a team and they take it away.
The Thunder play similar to the Clippers using that high pick and roll. The Spurs are going to take that away. Russell Westbrook isn't going to see as many open looks in that high screen and roll mid-range jumpshot as he's seen against the Lakers. Durant won't either. I see the Spurs making Durant, Westbrook and Harden give it up to players like Perkins, Ibaka and Thabo and making them hit open shots.
The only way the Thunder have a chance in this series is if they run, run, run non-stop... But that's not going to happen.
I see this series going 5 or 6 games.
Leonard is a great defensive player... huge arms... he could disturb durant...
only 3 games between leonard and durant :
AND leonard has done a great JOB !
tony parker VS russ' westbrook should be THE KEY matchup :
They definitely have a shot, but I think the Spurs are the favorites. Spurs seem to good for anyone right now though.
You guys are talking like the Spurs will be playing the Jazz again. This is the Thunder. The team that will have the two best players on the floor for most of the game, and the same team that made it to the WCF last year as well. The Spurs have played the easier teams in this post season while the Thunder have beated the last two title winners. Am I missing something, or are you guys just under crediting how good the Thunder can be?
It's easy to say "The spurs will do this and that", but the outcome can be strikingly different. Unlike the Jazz and clippers the Thunder don't have to double down on Duncan in the post as they have shown in this Lakers series, and the Thunder will have the size advantage at every possition except when Duncan's in the game. Also, who guards Durant? Leonard? please...Thunder in 6
Its going to be the most interesting series all playoffs, i cant wait
Spurs and the Pacers in the Finals, would anybody truly enjoy this series? lmao
You know what I basically just realized? The WCF should really be the finals. Spurs and Thunder are the best two teams left
yeah, winner of spurs vs thunder should be the champs. I dont see anyone from the east playing on the level of either of those teams right now. As for spurs vs thunder, man i expect 7 hard fought games. But my money would probably be on the thunder.
As long as OKC has Durant they can win it all , now he will need to bring his "A" game for that series. Though top to bottom I like the Spurs more Durant gives them the shot they need to beat the Spurs because honestly I don't think the Spurs have anyone to guard him.
The Heat have the two best players on the floor versus the Pacers and they happen to be the team that went to the *Finals* last year, but what's happening in that series? You could argue that the Clippers have the two best players right now versus the Spurs, but look what's happening to them.
This is a *team* game and nobody is doing it better than the Spurs right now at both ends of the floor. No, they're not playing the Jazz, but they're just completely wrecking the Clippers' high pick and roll game. And offensively, they have no ego. I mean, they're just putting on a clinic when it comes to taking care of the ball, moving the ball, making the right passes, making shots, etc. And this team is coached by the best coach in basketball right now. They're not going to panic down the stretch and be dumb like the Lakers.
The Spurs are a complete team with no holes and they're the only team you can say that about right now. There's a reason people are high on them. Because they've won like 17-20 games in a row dating back to the regular season and they're playing lights out right now.
Not saying they are not good but the two teams they have faced were very weak IMO.Thunder should win. Westbrook dominates that series scoring. We will see soon I guess.
JunkYardDog, good call on Leonard, he has really matured as a player over the season, he's more complete now, one thing i didn't know about Leonard was that he is such a good passer, sure he doesn't get a great amount of assists but the weight of his passes are pretty impressive for a forward, his decision making is surprisingly good and he has a no-look pass in his arsenal which shows the confidence he has. His 3pt shot is coming along extremely well also, in January, he shot 28% from beyond the arc, in February, his percentage rose to 47% in March, 43% and then he fell to 35% in April which is disappointing to an extent due to how well his shooting was in previous months.
I personally fancy the Thunder over the Spurs, i really believe it's the Thunder's turn, i used to think that the Heat would win it all but the Pacers have really exposed them. The Thunder look stronger than ever with Harden and Ibaka having great seasons providing excellent back-up to Durant and Westbrook, also, they have Perkins who has winning experience, defensive ace Sefolosha, 0.4 shot Fisher and a great coach. I'm not belittling other teams but this Thunder squad has really grown up.
Pound for pound the Thunder are more talented and athletic... but this years Spurs are the best TEAM I've seen in a long time... and they have the better coach. What really sets the Spurs apart is their collective decision making on the floor. Shot selection, making the extra pass, team defense, turnovers, hustle... The Spurs dominate intelligently. I NEVER see the Spurs have a 1 on 1 play that ends in a contested running jumper or turn around fade away (**cough cough** Kobe. Melo). Those are WOW shots that have longterm averages of maybe a 35% FG rate. The Thunder can win, but they need to play nearly as flawless to do it and I'm not sure they're there yet.
The Spurs had the best trade deadline. Picking up Diaw really completed their starting 5. Diaw's strength has always been his passing and he plays above average defense. Its not the sexy block/steal statline, but its good in your face, you won't get by me ball. Diaw doesn't try to be anything more then a complimentary part to the machine. He'll pick his spots carefully. The Bobcats wanted Diaw to be a go to guy who forces the issue on offense...thats just not his game. Having a PF who can pass like a guard inside the paint or out is a luxury most teams don't have. Since inserting Diaw into the starting lineup the Spurs are something like 27-5 including the playoffs. The Spurs average margin of victory during that time is around 15 ppg. Stephen Jackson and Patty Mills have been solid but unspectacular... which is a good thing for the Spurs. In an 80 possession game most teams take 65 quality shots. The Spurs take 75. Thats what makes them so hard to beat.
The Thunders best chance is continuing to allow Harden to run the point. Hardens "old man game" is the type of high efficiency ball the Thunder need to win. The few games Harden goes 2-10 from the field, he still gets to the line 8-10 times. Harden will break down the defense with his penetration and either get to the rim or find an open man for a good look. Westbrooks turnovers have gone down since he stopped trying to be a PG. His midrange shot and transition game have been stellar lately. The Lakers have been testing the Thunder in completely different ways then either team will face with the Spurs.
If we're looking at a Spurs/Thunder matchup, I'd say Spurs in 5, maybe 6 if the Thunder get lucky.
I agree with that 110%. That couldn't have been put any better.
" You could argue that the Clippers have the two best players right now versus the Spurs, but look what's happening to them."
No you can't. You can argue Chris Paul is one of the best two players, but you cannot make the argument Blake Griffin is better than Parker or Duncan.
Yea, I wanted to take that back after I wrote it.
That's not an argument I'm willing to get into lol.
Yeah, but the semi-exposing of Blake Griffin is probably a good thing. Everybody gets hit in the playoffs at some point (assuming they get there), but hopefully he learns from it. One would hope he'll spend the summer working on post moves and jumpers, and then get to training camp and find a coach that tries to instruct them on how to play NBA defense.
I'm really hoping and praying OKC can pull it off, but I'm nervous to say the least. HotSnot put my thoughts into words
Also, I don't know how Harden has an "old man's game." Can someone please explain why people describe it that way? When I think of someone with an old man's game, I think of Andre Miller. I've never seen an old man dunk it like Harden, besides Uncle Drew lol
I think it will be a competitive series. The Thunder have the most talent top to bottom in the NBA and are a complete team. The Thunder's big men will defend the Parker-Duncan pick and roll better than Griffin/Jordan could, and Perkins can defend Duncan well in the post. I think the Spurs pull it off in 7, though, because of their experience and the fact that I think the Spurs offense is just too good. They seem like their almost impervious to extended slumps on offense due to their excution of team offense to create easy shots. I also feel like the Spurs interior defense will limit Westbrook. He won't score 37 points on 26 shots against the Spurs defense.
I like the Thunder in 6. Spurs are good but Clippers were not good to me.. Bad on D real Bad. Utah had no shot vs anyone. Wont be a believer until they beat Thunder.. I like Thunder in 6.
This could be a great series, the old guard vs the new, I'd say it would probably be a 6 or 7 game series and I do slightly favour the Spurs as they can probably shut down the Thunder's offence as much as the Thunder can shut down the Spurs and with Tim Duncan on court the Thunder's frontcourt could get less points than usual which in a tight series could make all the difference.
I wonder if Coach Poppovich might put Jackson on Durant for some spells as I recall Jackson shuting down Dirk when he played for GSW in the 2007 play offs.
Win or lose, the Spurs are the single best team I've seen since the 2001 Lakers at least. The Thunder can win if Durant is unreal Jordan-esque, otherwise... just no. It's the Spurs series to lose.
The Spurs just have too much. I love Durant, and Westbrook, even Harden's emergence in these playoffs, but I just don't see how they can beat the Spurs four times. Should be an interesting series, I'm going with Spurs in 6. Although, I wouldn't be surprised if it's shorter, and it's not a criticism of the Thunder in the slightest. It's a huge compliment to the best team in the NBA right now.