April 11, 2013; Oakland, CA, USA; Oklahoma City Thunder small forward Kevin Durant (35) celebrates with point guard Russell Westbrook (0) after the third quarter against the Golden State Warriors at Oracle Arena. The City Thunder defeated the Warriors 116-97. Mandatory Credit: Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

OKC Thunder projected to win 58 games by USA Today

USA Today posted an article projecting the wins and losses for every team in the NBA this coming season.

As usual with record projections, it feels like they have a few too many teams winning too many games at the top of the list.

The Oklahoma City Thunder come in 4th overall in the NBA and 2nd in the Western Conference with a 58-24 record, two wins less than last season.

They have the Houston Rockets first in the West winning 60 games, a pretty big jump from their 8th seed last year, but the acquisition of Dwight Howard has a lot of people high on the Rockets.

The top two teams are the Chicago Bulls winning 65 games and the Miami Heat taking a step back winning 61.

I’m fine with the Heat around 61 but 65 for the Bulls seems very high, even if Derrick Rose is back for an entire season.

In total, they have eight teams winning 50-plus games.

I think that 58 wins is both realistic and the best case scenario for the Thunder. Losing Kevin Martin should hurt their regular season record, but I don’t think it will actually set the Thunder back come playoff time, unless costing them a top seed in the conference becomes too much to overcome.

The Thunder have improved their winning percentage every season since coming to OKC. This year will probably be the first that they don’t do that.

The Thunder aren’t about regular season success anymore though. They’ve proven all they’ve needed to in that area. Now it’s time to focus solely on being ready for the postseason.

As far as Houston winning 60 games, let’s not get too far ahead of ourselves here. I would expect the Rockets to be a top 3-4 seed in the West but winning 60 is not easy to do.

Tags: Oklahoma City Thunder

comments powered by Disqus