OKC Loud Links: 66 Up, 66 Down

Boy, what a rush that was, eh? The Thunder concluded the 66 game season last night. Unfortunately, they finished it up in much the same way as they finished playing almost every other playoff team in the month of April - by losing in the 4th quarter. If there is another gear to be shifted into before the playoffs start, now would be a great time to work the clutch a bit. A worthy challenge awaits.

OKC Can Finally Look to the Playoffs | Daily Thunder

A cynic (me) might say that OKC started looking toward the playoffs on April 1st.

Thunder Tight-Rope Performance an Apt Metaphor | Ball Don't Lie

Sometimes breathtaking, sometimes kick-you-in-the-nads painful.

Billy Hunter's Simmering Mess | Yahoo! Sports

I really wish this report came out at a time when I could devote some meaningful research to it. Is this what Derek Fisher is trying to reveal? Do you think he leaked it to Woj?

2012's Best | SB Nation

Sharp runs down his list of awards for the 2012 season. Somehow LeBron James' dominance can be reduced to something that looks like smudged make-up.

Plenty at Stake Tonight | Sports Illustrated

There is still much left to be determined in tonight's final docket of games. I always find it amazing how regardless of sample size, competition can always boil down to just a handful of plays. It is our own game of inches.

Metta World Peace Got Screwed | Miami New Times

If a case is to be made in favor of Metta World Peace, who else to do it but former 2 Live Crew member Luther Campbell? His argument has more to do with the NBA culture than the Peace elbow though, because in the real world if that action had taken place Peace would have been arrested for criminal assault.

The Best Rookies | Grantland

Pruiti finishes up his tracking of the best rookies this season. Kyrie Irving comes out on top, giving Cavaliers fans something good to hold onto for a change.

The Inevitable End of the Nash-Suns Equilibrium | Hardwood Paroxysm

Steve Nash's time in Phoenix may have reached an end. However, because of the way Nash has carried himself I don't think the Suns fans will be mad if he leaves. I feel a Ray Borque-like denouement coming forth.

Nash Showered by Love | Ball Don't Lie

Phoenix shows Nash their appreciation. Perhaps the greatest thing you can say about Nash is that he makes the game fun for all who watch and play. I like his quote here:

"It means it's authentic, the relationship that I thought we had."

That's a great sentiment. Often times we think we have a relationship with a player (LeBron James) or a team (Sonics) only to find that it isn't really real. Nash's relationship with the city of Phoenix is.

Cavs Offer Massages for Media | SB Nation

What is not disclosed however is that the masseuse is Dan Gilbert.

Vinny Del Negro Can't Get Out of the Way | SB Nation

Somehow, this is a perfect metaphor for Vinny Del Negro's coaching style.

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