Oklahoma City Thunder Making Mockery of Battle for West’s No. 8 Seed

February 24th, 2015 by Dan Favale Leave a reply »

Kevin Durant's latest injury is a setback that will not prevent the Oklahoma City Thunder from moving forward.

Per a team announcement on Sunday, Durant underwent a procedure to replace the screw in his surgically repaired right foot. He is expected to miss at least one week.

Cursory looks at the standings suggest Durant's absence couldn't be more untimely. Though the Thunder have assumed control of the Western Conference's eighth and final playoff spot, their hold on it remains insecure.

Both the New Orleans Pelicans and Phoenix Suns are in hot pursuit of eighth place. Just two games separate the Thunder and an unforeseen lottery appearance with 26 left to play. Losing Durant, who has missed more time this season (29 games) than his previous seven combined (16), threatens to leave Oklahoma City playing catch-up yet again.

Except it won't. The Thunder control their own 2015 postseason fate and, by default, that's not going to change.


Shared Misfortune

Direct competition has never looked more oblique.

Of the two other challengers for eighth ...

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