With the Western Conference Finals starting tonight, I polled our staff to get their series predictions. It looks like the majority are picking the San Antonio Spurs in six.
SPURS IN 5
Spurs in 5. I see the Spurs falling in game three or four, then wrapping up the series in five games. Key reason San Antonio wins this series, team depth.
The Spurs will execute better, the Thunder (Westbrook) will struggle with turnovers, and OKC won’t be able to defend our 3-point shooting. The Spurs will drop a game, ending the winning streak but that will only provide extra motivation to close the series out in 5.
SPURS IN 6
Michael A. De Leon
Spurs in 6. While this will be their closest series, the Spurs have the edge in quite a few areas. They also have the playoff experience and depth that the Thunder cannot counter. If the Thunder try to run and pickup the pace a bit, they’ll play right into the Spurs’ strengths. If they go to a halfcourt game, they can kick it into Timmy and let him go to work down low.
Spurs in 6. San Antonio is much deeper, have the experience, championship pedigree, and home court advantage. Add an injection of youth (Kawhi Leonard, Danny Green) with Gregg Popovich’s leadership and this is just a complete team the Thunder have not played against in the postseason.
The Spurs frontcourt with Tim Duncan is much better than OKC’s and the Spurs have shown they can limit Durant somewhat in the regular season.
Every game will be a dog fight but the Spurs will win in 6 games and head to the NBA Finals.
I’m taking the Spurs in 6. I don’t think the Thunder will be able to out execute the Spurs four out of seven games. They’ll take two games at home before they bow out. The Spurs will be in the NBA Finals one more time.
I’ll say Spurs in 6. I think the Spurs’ offense will have the Thunder running in circles but there will be a game where the Spurs go cold & Harden & Durant go nuts. So Spurs in 6 instead of 5.
SPURS IN 7
The Thunder are very talented and by far the toughest test the Spurs have faced. I think the shock of playing a much better team might take the Spurs by surprise and they could drop one of the first 2 games at home. I think they’ll make up for it by winning one on the road though. I think the Spurs’ experience and depth carry them through this series and they’ll pull out a slug-fest in the end. I predicted 5 games for each of the first 2 series, giving too much credit to the other team, that could easily be the case in this one too. Spurs in 7