Western Conference Finals Now 2-2
Home Court has prevailed in the Western Conference Finals as the series is now tied up 2-2. The young Thunder showed veteran-like poise winning two games in a row, despite dropping the first two games. The Spurs, on the other hand, who had previously won twenty games in a row; are now on a two game losing streak.
Since, Scott Brooks made the adjustment to move Thabo Sefolosha to guard Tony Parker, the Spurs have not been able to effectively execute their offense. In the first two games, Parker had 52 points, 14 assists, and 11 rebounds, but in these last two games he has only had 28 points, 8 assists, and 5 rebounds.
The game was put of reach when Kevin Durant went off for 18 points in the 4th quarter, which included 16 points in a row. In almost disbelief, Pop admitted, “His (Durant) play was better than anything we did defensively, that’s for sure.”
However, the biggest X-factor may have been the frontcourt of OKC. Perkins, Ibaka, and Collison combined for an unexpected 22-25, including a historic night from Serge Ibaka who went 11-11 without missing a single shot.
The silver lining for the Spurs is that the Dejuan Blair was effective in the limited minutes that he played in place of Matt Bonnor. Blair rolled nicely off the pick-n-roll, drew a charge, and got a block, making the most of the ten minutes that he played. If Blair absorbs the rest of Tiago Splitter’s and Matt Bonnor’s minutes, it could pay dividends in containing the newly surging frontcourt of the Thunder.
A series hasn’t supposedly begun until someone wins on the road. The good news for Spurs fans is that they have home court advantage. The good news for Thunder fans, however, is that they have all the momentum and swagger heading in to an important Game 5.