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Are we re-living the 2012 Thunder vs. Spurs Series?

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The Oklahoma CIty Thunder tied the series 2-2 against the San Antonio Spurs, and we start to recall the 2012 playoffs meeting between these two teams.

Mark D. Smith-USA TODAY Sports

After winning Game 3, the Oklahoma City Thunder were also successful in winning Game 4 and tying the series 2-2.  Kevin Durant had 31 points on 50% shooting from the field, 5 rebounds and 5 assists. Russell Westbrook added 40 points, 10 assists, 5 rebounds, and 5 steals. He also became the first player since Michael Jordan to record a 40-10-5 in a playoff game.

Although Jackson suffered from a minor ankle injury, secondary players such as Kendrick Perkins, Steven Adams, Caron Butler, and Jeremy Lamb played well with an amazing effort. Perkins surprised us a lot, as he came out with 2 points, 2 blocks, 1 assist, and 10 total rebounds. The rest of the secondary players that I have noted out had few points, couple of rebounds, steals, and a pair of 3-pointers. Matter of fact, those little things started the spark in the game. Concerning the San Antonio Spurs starters, they combined for 39 points only.

The Thunder played very well in utilizing their athleticism. The whole team stepped up, and they played as a unit. Every player who played made his mark on the game. They forced Popovich into difficult situations, and he ended up substituting the Spurs' starters out for good with 5 minutes left in the third quarter.

Let's take a look at the Spurs' performance in this series against the Thunder without Ibaka, and how it changed when Ibaka was back.

Spurs Without Ibaka

Spurs With Ibaka













Offensive Rating per 100 possessions



Fast Break Points



Points in the paint



The table shows how the Thunder improved throughout the series with the presence of Ibaka. The Thunder are currently playing well against the Spurs, and at this rate, it's certainly looking like they have a good shot at advancing to the Finals. The Thunder have two of the best players in the league, and secondary players that are now hitting a peak. The Thunder's athleticism is killing the Spurs, and that's how the Thunder beat the Spurs 4-0 in the regular season series.

Heading to Game 5 into San Antonio, it shapes up as a hard task for the Thunder to beat the Spurs on their court, but I believe the Thunder will be able do it with Ibaka if they continue with the same rhythm they have been playing with in Games 3 and 4.

Winning Game 5 is really important for the Thunder. If they do so, the Thunder will be heading to Chesapeake Energy Arena for Game 6. The Thunder have a rare moxie on their home floor. Hopefully, the Thunder will be advancing to the Finals, especially now that they have been reinvigorated by Ibaka's return.