|Written by Michael|
Bet on the NBAThe Oklahoma City Thunder had a great run in the 2010 NBA Playoffs, but will be hoping top that performance this year.
Coming off of the regular season that they had, a successful playoff run may be entirely possible. But first, the team will have to get through a very tough series against the Denver Nuggets, a team which has only seemed to get stronger since the trade of Carmelo Anthony to the Knicks.
Coming into the playoffs as the No. 4 seed means that the Thunder are possibly in the most danger of being upset in the first round. Their 30-11 record at home is strong for the Western Conference, and their 25-16 road record matches the top seeded San Antonio Spurs. Oklahoma City also dominated their division this year, going 13-3 against opponents.
The Thunder are coming into the playoffs with a loss to the lowly Milwaukee Bucks on Wednesday, a game that went to overtime before the Thunder lost 110-106. But they also bring the league's top scorer with them to face the Nuggets. Kevin Durant won his second consecutive NBA scoring title and has been putting up 27.7 points per game this season.
While the Thunder and Mavericks were fighting for the third seed late in the season, the loss to the Bucks sealed the fourth seed for Oklahoma City. And the loss was due mostly to head coach Scott Brooks' decision to rest his starters for much of the game. After building up sizable leads in both halves, the starters were benched and the reserves gave the game away.
The Nuggets are going to be a fierce matchup for the Thunder, and a long series between the two is expected. The home court advantage is extremely important for the Thunder, as Denver is only 17-24 on the road. The Nuggets will have to play at a higher level to come out on top of this series, but the two teams match up well enough that a Game 6 or 7 is very possible.
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