OKC came out victors at home and take great confidence into the NBA Finals knowing they have home court advantage. They will meet either Miami or Boston beginning on Wednesday the 13th June Australian time.
San Antonio had one of the best first halves you will see from an NBA team. They started red hot and continued that form up until half time. They scored 63 points away from home and led by 15. They simply could not miss. Tony Parker was amazing, he could't put a foot wrong. It wasn't as if OKC were playing terrible, the Spurs were making some incredible threes. Stephen Jackson was unreal all night from beyond the arc hitting 6 from 7.
However in the second half a new OKC team came out. They were hungrier on defence and KD went to work on the offensive end along with his pals Rusty and Beard man Harden. Tony Parker was woeful in the second half. He seemed to lose his rhythm and way allowing OKC to get in on the fast break and do damage on the scoreboard. I disagree with Pop's coaching strategy at the beginning of the second half. He did not call a time out until the Thunder had gone on an 11-2 run. That is insane, especially with the way the crowd was screaming and clapping. The first five minutes of a quarter is most crucial when trying to stave off a comeback. Personally I would have called a time out after OKC went on a 4-0 run. I know it sounds like nothing but it is huge when it's over a 2:30 minute period and you haven't scored.
I thought Derek Fischer was key in the last few minutes when the Spurs kept on coming at them. He made a big three to put them up five with 4:30 to go and a bank shot with 2 minutes left to put them up six. James Harden's fearlessness in the clutch is amazing for someone his age and inexperience in big matches. I can't imagine what it's going to be like if this team sticks around when they are actually in the prime of their careers. It's scary!
I'm thinking OKC wants to play Boston. They will rip them apart in the big man department. Boston will struggle to get that easy lob pass in which they are having their way with Miami at the moment. That is a big part of their offence in their series against the Heat. OKC will shut that down and they will have to make big plays from the perimeter. Westbrook will also be able to contain Rondo much better than what Chalmers is capable of. Miami match up a little better but I still don't think they have enough depth to match the Thunder.
Check out game highlights below courtesy of www.NBA.com