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PBT Extra: Talking who can challenge the Heat, Thunder

Feb 11, 2013, 8:33 PM EDT

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We can be honest here: As of right now the smart money would be on a Miami/Oklahoma city rematch in the finals.

But who could horn in on the party? That’s what Kay Adams and I discuss in the first of this week’s PBT Extra. What about the Bulls or Pacers in the East? The Knicks? And out West are the Clippers for real? What about the Spurs?

If you made me bet I’d bet rematch, but the idea of another team knocking off the Thunder in the West is not impossible. In the East… I don’t see it. Not with LeBron James playing like this.

  1. imthedudedude - Feb 11, 2013 at 9:10 PM

    The east is pathetic. Miami could very well be the best team in the league but after that there is no one I would bet on to beat Memphis right now. Clips or spurs could make a run but Thunder are heads above them. Trust me, I’m a suns fan I just saw it back to back games, I also have no room to talk bad teams in the league, one of the worst records over here, but hey we beat the lakers, that’s all I needed this year. Hopefully couple of draft picks comin next year, that is if Sarver doesn’t trade em away for cash cause god knows he loves that cash.

    • dannymac17 - Feb 11, 2013 at 9:23 PM

      Clippers don’t have a shot to beat the Thunder?

      Besides that laugher, the Clips actually match up well.

    • pudgalvin - Feb 11, 2013 at 10:02 PM

      So far this season, the heat are 0-5 vs. The knicks, pacers and bulls. I know its the regular season, but any team with a legit center is going to give the heat problems.

    • saint1997 - Feb 12, 2013 at 2:13 AM

      I would pick Knicks, Bulls with D-Rose and Pacers over Memphis absolutely

    • fanofevilempire - Feb 12, 2013 at 7:08 AM

      Scott Brooks won’t ever bring a title to OKC.
      sorry, just telling the truth.

  2. 1972wasalongtimeago - Feb 11, 2013 at 10:22 PM

    The lack of respect given to the San Antonio Spurs on these “pages” is mind blowing to me. They’re the best team in the league. They have the best coach in the league. The have the best record in the league. And tonight without Duncan, Parker, & Ginobili, the Spurs are blowing out the Bulls in Chicago.

    So the question shouldn’t be who can challenge the Thunder or Heat. The question is whether the Thunder or Heat can challenge the Spurs.

    I hope the Heat can. But right now? Spurs are the top dog.

    • rushbacker - Feb 11, 2013 at 11:57 PM

      LOL! Yea, right. . . keep telling yourself that.

    • miamatt - Feb 12, 2013 at 3:15 PM

      Indeed, they are playing great, but we’ve come to expect this type of performance in the regular season from SA. I would say, regarding the Spurs- and the Bulls for that matter- the regular season makes them look better than they really are. I heard somebody else say this, don’t want to take full credit, but the Spurs are kinda fools’ gold to me. Like the Patriots of the past 8 years, regular season juggernaughts, but not the absolute best come postseason. I wouldn’t count them out, but the idea behind power rankings is to look past records to get at who is really the best. That being said, I wouldn’t have been offended to see the Spurs above the Heat, though I still think Miami would win in a seven game series.

  3. mannyfresh209 - Feb 11, 2013 at 11:27 PM

    Same story as last year. And the year before. And the year before that. You get the picture.

    The Spurs, while legitimately a VERY good team, are no longer the threat they once were. The Thunder, on the other hand, are the absolute favorites to come out of the West. And, make no mistake, the author of this article acknowledges somebody may, in fact, UPSET them. But, in all likelihood, it isn’t happening.

    • badintent - Feb 12, 2013 at 12:13 AM

      until Westbrooke throws a dozen TOs and shoots 3-20. That dude needs a John Stockton brain transfer

  4. thecitizensnips - Feb 11, 2013 at 11:34 PM

    Look, I”m a lifelong Spurs fan, practically bleed that silver and black. But we gots to be realistic here. Los Spurs are MADE for the regular season but it is yet to be seen how much they TRULY improved come the playoffs. I mean, minus Manu and Tim Duncan, who’s defense this year has been spectacular for the Spurs, just about every player has improved but we will always struggle against the athletic long teams like the Thunder and Clippers, never mind the Heat. Maybe Timmy should pull a Ray Lewis and inspire the team to the Championship. On second thought…Itakethatbackdonteverleavetimmyyyy.

  5. kavika6 - Feb 12, 2013 at 7:10 AM

    It bothers me sometimes when commenters go after Kurt and call him a fool, but it’s hard to get past his disrespect for the Spurs.

    • Kurt Helin - Feb 12, 2013 at 9:05 AM

      I respect the Spurs. I love their execution, they have the best coach and he most professional locker room in the game. I just think they are going to get knocked out of the playoffs handily again, maybe in the second round.

      • abasketballthing - Feb 12, 2013 at 9:24 AM

        They were pretty much the best team in the league last season. The Thunder beat them in the playoffs thanks to an unlikely hot stretch that they didn’t come close to matching in the Finals. Also, they destroyed the Clippers in the playoffs. I don’t see why they wouldn’t reach the WCF and give the Thunder a good fight.

      • abasketballthing - Feb 12, 2013 at 9:25 AM

        The Spurs were pretty much the best team in the league last season. The Thunder beat them in the playoffs thanks to an unlikely hot stretch that they didn’t come close to matching in the Finals. Also, they destroyed the Clippers in the playoffs. I don’t see why they wouldn’t reach the WCF and give the Thunder a good fight.

      • savvybynature - Feb 12, 2013 at 4:32 PM

        Knocked out handily huh?

        I guess that six game series where 3 of OKC’s 4 wins came by single digits was just a figment of my imagination.

        As far as predicting a rematch from last season’s finals, that’s usually what everyone predicts but it rarely happens. I’d play the field if you were giving me even odds.

  6. bucrightoff - Feb 12, 2013 at 7:28 AM

    The notion that OKC is head and shoulders above the Spurs is nonsense. The Thunder beat the Spurs last year because they played their best 4 game stretch of the season from games 3-6, and while they won it wasn’t like it was a cakewalk. Spurs are better this year (Splitter and an even deeper bench are huge), the Thunder are at best the same but have to be considered worse just because Harden gives you something Kevin Martin can’t. Not saying the Thunder won’t win because I think it’ll be a great 7 game series, but it’s razor thin between the top 3 teams, and one has Gregg Popovich. That matters a lot.

  7. aboogy123456 - Feb 12, 2013 at 8:29 AM

    The Heat are a good team but I don’t think they would get out of the west if they were there. They are a very unique team with their small ball, and so the way to beat them is to have big men that dominate in the post. I think the grizzlies and the spurs would probably be too much for the Heat down low but the problem is that the heat will most likely not have to face either of those teams. The thunder match up well against the western conference teams but they have absolutely no good post up big men to take advantage of the heat’s glaring weakness. The playoffs have a lot to do with matchups and the matchups are really in the heat’s favor.

    • heat256 - Feb 12, 2013 at 10:18 AM

      To me, the X factor is Bosh. If he can hit his jumper consistently and pull his man out to him, it’ll open up the lane for Wade and James. That’s the best way the Heat can win as they aren’t very big or physical as some of the teams are. But they are fast and can use that to their advantage. The playoffs will be fun. I view the reg season with the same indifference as many players do too. Just too long.

  8. eflem80 - Feb 12, 2013 at 5:16 PM

    The Grizzlies & Knicks will be in the Finals. Both are built for the playoffs….not so much the regular season. Solid defense, solid half court offense, good combination of youth & veterans who know what it takes to win in the post season & a superstar who can carry them offensively when things get “tight”. People are gonna hate this but the biggest hurdle for both teams won’t be the Heat or OKC. The Bulls will be the Knicks biggest hurdle & the Spurs will be the Grizzlies biggest hurdle.

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