Charles Barkley and Coach Scott Brooks both did some radio interviews where they had an opportunity to comment on the Thunder. I've excerpted a few of their comments here, but be sure to follow the links to read (or listen) to them in their entirety.
On who Charles thought would win the Thunder-Grizzlies series:
"Well I picked Memphis to win that series, but if you go back a week and a half ago, when they lost that triple overtime game, that flipped the series. But I thought Memphis was going to win that series. But once they lost that triple overtime game - you're only going to win one game on the road realistically playing a good team, you're not going to beat a good team on the road twice. But when they lost that fourth game I said, ‘uh oh, that flipped the whole series'"
Who does Charles think will win the Conference Finals?
But going forward, I think Dallas is going to beat Oklahoma City. Dallas has played fantastic. I think Dirk is just...Dirk is just Dirk. Dirk has been great for a long time. I think the addition of Tyson Chandler and Brendan Haywood makes them a much bigger team. They lost because they were just too small the last couple years. But they've solved that problem with Haywood, and they've solved that problem with Tyson Chandler. So Dallas is the team to beat in the West, and I think they will win the West."
"Well Dirk is going to have the better series because Dirk is going to have better matchups. Durant is a great player but one of his weaknesses in his game is he's a jump shooter, so little guys can have success. So he played great yesterday - he had 39 - but he had 11 the game before. When he adds a post-up to his game, little guys won't be able to guard him. And Dirk, that's the difference. Dirk can post anyone up. You just get easier shots when you post up."
On the defensive play of Nick Collison:
"You know what we don't win the series without Collison. One of the things...I was a role player for many years and it's hard for a role player to impact the game after game after game after game. Yes you can have a pretty good game occasionally, but he impacted that game every night. Even the games we lost he gave us a chance. He's just one of those guys that every team needs to be successful...The spacing is perfect. His defensive rotations are usually flawless, when he does make a mistake you are shocked, but it doesn't happen often. He's a winner."
"It's a definitely a different style. Memphis is very good. They are physical. It was like a playing a football game because every possession was a fight. It was a battle and we were fighting for ground and space on the floor, but Dallas they space you so well, their passing, they make you chase the ball around the court. We have to do a great job."
Who defends Dirk Nowitzki for you guys?
"We will start off with our normal rotation with Serge Ibaka. Serge will get the first crack at him, but we are going to have to send multiple defenders at him. He's unique and as gifted of a forward as I have ever seen. The way he scores from the three, scores from the free thrown line, he scores from the block, he scores in so many awkward ways. He makes tough shots look easy because he does it so many times that you look at it and say that's a tough shot, but he makes it every time."