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Thursday NBA playoff previews: Will we get a Game 7?

May 15, 2014, 9:16 AM EDT

Los Angeles Clippers v Oklahoma City Thunder - Game Five Getty Images

In the first round of the playoffs 5-of-8 series went to a Game 7. Will we get even one in Round 2? We find out Thursday night.

Indiana Pacers at Washington Wizards (Pacers lead series 3-2). Washington center Marcin Gortat admitted he was dreading going home, where the Wizards have lost both games this series. They’ve already won five road games this postseason and are hoping to avoid becoming the first team to do so without reaching the conference finals. The Pacers, on the other hand, are trying to avoid a total collapse. Their Game 5 blowout loss might have already opened Pandora’s Box. This is a matchup of two teams that might be unconfident — the Wizards in their location and the Pacers in themselves.
—Dan Feldman

Oklahoma City Thunder vs. Los Angeles Clippers (Thunder lead series 3-2). When we talk about “playoff experience” we often focus on the nebulous “teams that know how to win” idea. What may be even a bigger part of playoff experience is learning how to deal with and respond to losses. Because there will be losses. The Clippers had a devastating one in Game 5 — up 7 with 49 seconds left they made terrible plays and decisions, plus got a swift kick from the referees, and they lost. The Thunder suffered a painful loss in Game 4, blowing a 16-point lead, but they came from behind to win Game 5 — they showed some poise. Do the Clippers have that in them? Is dealing with loss a lesson they have learned? If so, expect a Game 7 Saturday. If not their season ends.
—Kurt Helin

  1. gostlcards5 - May 15, 2014 at 9:50 AM

    4 out of 5 games in this series have been won by the road team. They looked tired and awful on Tuesday, but I think the Pacers take care of business tonight.

    • gostlcards5 - May 15, 2014 at 9:52 AM

      Maybe I should correct that, I don’t think all of them looked tired. PG didn’t seem to have enough lift on a lot of shots, and he logged a lot of minutes Tuesday (but he’s young, and that’s no excuse). More, they looked lethargic, indifferent, something….not really sure.

      AAANNNDDD, that’s why the conundrum around this team continues.

      • borderline1988 - May 15, 2014 at 10:41 AM

        I do think PG is a bit overrated..the media prematurely annointed him as a superstar.

        But he is the last guy you can blame for the Pacers’ play (and David West). The lens should be on Roy Hibbert, Lance Stephenson and George Hill. It’s time for those guys to step up. The Pacers have been lucky to get away with series wins, mostly because they played arguably 2 of the bottom 3 playoff teams in the NBA. They’re going to get annihilated by Miami if they don’t pick it up

      • antistratfordian - May 15, 2014 at 7:43 PM

        Borderline is right. Basically everyone not named Paul George has to step up their game. They have all been playing below average ball, imo. Yet, here they are.

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