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OKC Is Just One Game Away

Although most fans and experts had already penciled in the Golden State Warriors to make the NBA Finals after a record-setting 73-9 regular season and dominating the first two rounds of the Playoffs. But, the Oklahoma City Thunder haven’t backed down from the challenge.

No one should be surprised at what the Thunder are doing. This is the three-seed in the West and a team that went 55-27 in the regular season. However, they stayed under the radar due to Steph Curry’s unheard of MVP season and the chase for 73 wins.

But with a healthy Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook, this team took off and exceeded the expectations. And the Thunder have continued to thrive in the Playoffs.

Oklahoma City dominated Dallas in the first round in five games. That set up a second round series with the San Antonio Spurs. The Spurs had only lost one game at home all season before the Thunder rolled into town and took the series in six games and winning two games in San Antonio.

Golden State hadn’t lost at home in Oracle Arena all season, but the Thunder came in and stole Game 1 from them.

The Warriors fought back in Game 2 to even the series before heading to the Midwest to play at Chesapeake Energy Arena.

OKC dominated Game 3 from start to finish. The Thunder hung up 72 points in the first half and 133 for the game. However, the biggest talking point from this game is the fact that Draymond Green kicked Thunder center Steven Adams in the groin. Intentional or not, Green should have been suspended but he wasn’t. And, it was the second time Green had made contact with Adams’ groin, as he kneed him in the area in Game 2.

It set up for an interesting Game 4 at OKC on Tuesday night. Players from both teams ran their mouths in between Game 3 and 4, mostly Green and Westbrook. But, Green called out Westbrook for being a flopper and basically calling him a prima donna.

Westbrook responded by dropping 36 points, 11 assists and 11 rebounds, his fifth playoff triple-double of his career. He is just the third player to post a 35-plus point triple-double in the playoffs against a defending champion, joining Jerry West and Oscar Robertson.

While Green didn’t play well at all and was involved in another questionable play where it appears he tripped Enes Kanter.

Luckily no one was injured and the play had no lasting impact on the game itself. Hopefully, the NBA will look at this and realize that Green is a dirty player and deserves a suspension.

The Thunder have a commanding 3-1 series lead and look to close out the Warriors Thursday night in Game 5. It won’t be easy for the Thunder, Golden State has lit up all season and could catch fire at any time.

Even if OKC doesn’t close out the series in Game 5 in Oakland, they have three tries to win one game. Not to mention, teams down 3-1 in a series are 9-223 in NBA Playoff history.

Can we go ahead and pencil OKC in to the Finals? Or, does Golden State have more history to make?

Images via CircaSports.com, SlamOnline.com, USAToday.com and Deadspin.com