Previewing the Western Conference Finals: Who wins Thunder-Spurs?

Soobum Im-USA TODAY Sports

In a conference full of heavy-weights, two juggernauts will face off for the right to go the NBA Finals.

The Western Conference Finals matchup between the Oklahoma City Thunder and the San Antonio Spurs is probably the toughest matchup currently in the 2014 playoffs. It is hard to predict the result with two teams so extremely talented facing off.

Unfortunately, the Thunder are going to play the Spurs without their best defensive star Serge Ibaka whom is going to be out for the rest of the 2014 postseason. On the other end, Tony Parker is suffering from a hamstring injury that occurred against the Blazers, and he is day-to-day in terms of whether he is going to play in the following series. However, teams such as the Spurs and Thunder are most likely to be prepared when playing without a star.

However, teams such as the Spurs and Thunder are most likely to be prepared when playing without a star.

In the regular season, Parker played only 68 games, and the Spurs finished with the best record in the West. According to ESPN, the Los Angeles Clippers' efficiency dropped when Nick Collison replaced Ibaka as the paint defender in Game 6.

The Spurs are a great team even compared to the Thunder as they have a good roster and a numerous players with considerable playoffs experience. To match that, the Thunder have two of the best players in the league, with Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook averaging a combined 58.1 points, 17.4 rebounds, and 12.4 assists in the postseason.

In the regular season, the Thunder swept the Spurs 4-0. However, the same thing happened as well with the Brooklyn Nets and the Miami Heat as the Nets swept the Heat 4-0 in the regular season, but the Nets failed and got eliminated in the playoffs. It is worth keeping in mind that the Thunder-Spurs matchup is way more even-matched.

According to ESPN, each team in NBA history that drove out its third round opponent 4-0 in the regular season has advanced to the NBA Finals. I expect the same thing with the Thunder, as I believe the whole team is going to step up, and remind us of the supremacy of Durant and Westbrook. Therefore, my final prediction will be the Thunder shutting down the series in seven.

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