Oklahoma City Thunder Starters Flop (Again); Spurs Lead Western Conference Finals 2-0

Tim Duncan
May 21 2014 San Antonio TX USA San Antonio Spurs forward Tim Duncan 21 shoots the ball against the Oklahoma City Thunder in game two of the Western Conference Finals of the 2014 NBA Playoffs at ATT Center Soobum Im USA TODAY Sports

The San Antonio Spurs are making the Western Conference Finals look like an opening-round playoff matchup.

San Antonio routed their way to another victory over the hapless-looking Oklahoma City Thunder on Wednesday, winning 112-77. If it’s possible, the game looked even easier for the home team than that score sounds.

The Thunder were beaten (quite easily, actually) at both ends of the court. As was the case in Game 1, their defense was non-existent. The other similarity from that first contest was that the offense struggled.

Oklahoma City’s problems at this point are numerous. The biggest issue has been the oft-publicized lack of starting power forward, Serge Ibaka. Ibaka’s absence was again on display for all to see on Wednesday. His 15.1 points per game are not only missing, but his presence makes Oklahoma City a better defensive squad as well. The Thunder were beaten badly on the boards, 53-38 and his nearly nine rebounds per game would be a big asset right now.

The lack of a healthy Ibaka is hardly the only issue that plagued the team in their latest loss. Specifically, Oklahoma City’s starters were missing in action in Game 2.

Playing in place of Ibaka, Nick Collison again offered little. After his scoreless output in the first game, the forward followed that up with only two points and two rebounds in 13 minutes. Playing that little, Collison isn’t absolutely killing the team out there, but he isn’t giving the Thunder much reason to keep him in games. When you compare his production versus that of Ibaka’s, it’s an utter mismatch.

Thabo Sefolosha again had a rough night. The starting point guard was scoreless for a second straight game and is now 0-for-9 from the field in the series. Not only that, but Sefalosha hasn’t even registered a single assist yet in the two games — as the team’s starting point guard.

Kendrick Perkins continued to be, well, Kendrick Perkins. The center is inconsistent and contributed little on Wednesday. After a quality Game 1 when he registered nine rebounds, he scored only two points and grabbed four boards in 15 foul-plagued minutes in Game 2. Despite playing so little, Perkins also picked up four quick fouls.

Even the superstar duo of Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook weren’t immune to the team’s problems. They played limited minutes due to the blowout and each scored only 15 points. They were only a combined 13-40 from the field and easily needed to do more.

Those two guys will be fine, obviously, but the Thunder need to get more from the rest of their starters if they want to make a series out of this mess.

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