The days between series is time to make fun of those who are no longer in the playoffs. That means that the Oklahoma City Thunder and especially Kevin Durant are being turned into a joke with memes included because that’s how things work – if you’re not number one, you’re fair game to be made mockery of.
Durant had a great season and won the MVP, but becoming ‘number 1’ is about more than just being great in the regular season. Eventually, it’s about what you do, and what your team does, in the most important time of the year. For the fourth straight season since the Thunder have turned into so-called contenders, they didn’t deliver the goods.
Durant isn’t alone in this – there’s a head coach that everyone seem to think is underperforming; there’s a bench that got shorter and shorter as the playoffs moved forward. There’s Russell Westbrook who is hard to tell if he is for you or against you, and there’s the big man duo of Serge Ibaka and Kendrick Perkins, that looks great together as long as no one is playing small ball against them.
The window isn’t closed. The Thunder still have the talent and potential to be NBA champions in the very near future before contract extensions and changes decimate the core of the team. But their potential has its limits, and at some point they’re going to have to come through instead of building a promise that is never fulfilled.