The Oklahoma City Thunder put together an impressive run through both the regular season and the NBA playoffs, but in the end it wasn't enough to get past the Miami Heat. How can the Thunder take the next step and win a title in 2013?
Thunder faced the ultimate agony of defeat last night, as they lost their
fourth straight game to the Miami Heat, and also lost their dreams of hoisting the trophy this season. They played as good as any team this year, and their group
of very young stars did some major growing up.
The Thunder had one of the
best records in the league this season, and depending on what kind of moves the
Lakers and Mavericks make this offseason; it might be either the Thunder or
Spurs and no one else in the West next season. Let’s take a look at the future NBA odds surrounding OKC next season, and see if it would be a good bet to take.
Thunder are 5/2 or +250 to win the title in 2013. They are tied with the Heat
at +250 as the top two favorites to win it all in 2013. This is about right, as
the Thunder did a lot of growing up this season, and will certainly do a lot
more after this tough NBA Finals loss.
in the perfect position, as all their core is signed for next season, and other
than Derrick Fisher, who is a free agent, all of the Thunder’s players will be
in uniform next season.
tough to say why the Thunder failed this season, but I’ll do my best to break
it down. Firstly, they are young, but I don’t think that has everything to do
with it. They ran through the Spurs and Lakers in the 2nd and 3rd
rounds of the playoffs. I didn’t see anyone talking about inexperience when
they were making Kobe Bryant and Tim Duncan look like AARP members.
really boils down to this for me; the Thunder peaked too soon. The Giants
peaked at the right time and won the Super Bowl, much like the Cardinals got
hot at the end of the MLB season last year to win the World Series. The Thunder
simply peaked about ten days early. They still had some of that magic left in
Game 1 of the Finals, but they ran out after that.
say the Thunder are missing that many pieces, and in fact, I don’t think they are
missing anything. They just need another year of getting better. I think we can
finally say with a certainty that the Kendrick Perkins trade was a mistake.
Even though he was huge against the Lakers and Spurs, he was too slow and not
big enough to play against Chris Bosh. You know they wish they had a healthy
Jeff Green back to score with the other Thunder stars and more importantly,
play defense on Lebron.
will be looking for another scorer, whether it is inside or on the perimeter in
the draft, but as low as they are picking, they probably won’t find any
immediate contributors. The Thunder don’t have much room for free agents, as
they just gave big money to Russell Westbrook, and they will need to save in
order to retain Serge Ibaka.
core guys can improve a lot over the next year, they should be back once again
to the Finals, and if they can get another year together, they might just
revenge their loss from 2012. However, the San Antonio Spurs will probably not go anywhere
if they resign Tim Duncan, and the Los Angeles Lakers and Mavs are capable of making huge
splashes this offseason, so OKC better hope they do a lot of improvement just in case.