OKC Thunder: Up to date standings, schedule, tiebreakers

James Harden, Paul George OKC Thunder (Photo by Tim Warner/Getty Images)
James Harden, Paul George OKC Thunder (Photo by Tim Warner/Getty Images) /

With just four days of regular season play remaining the OKC Thunder preserved their playoff berth and need just one win to cement it.

The OKC Thunder took care of business in Houston preserving their playoff berth — for the moment.

With four days remaining teams competing for the six positions on the Western Conference ladder have two games left to secure their tickets. That is all but the Utah Jazz who’ll be in action Sunday with one extra game in their queue.

Saturday Results:

With most of the other Western squads in action, the OKC Thunder while preserving their position, were unable to gain any ground on their rivals. Wins by the Nuggets, Spurs and Pelicans held their positions.

Losses by the Blazers, Warriors  and Rockets did not affect their positions. Portland has clinched a playoff post, but depending on what occurs over the next four days they could move downward on the bracket.

Where the teams stand heading into action Sunday April 8:

The following chart has been updated to reflect the status of the seven remaining squads competing for six playoff berths.  Of these seven squads the Blazers are the only team to have cemented their postseason appearance.

Notably, several of these squads will face each other as they finish their schedules. This is a key factor in how the teams will finish as a win could affect the tiebreak.

For the OKC Thunder scheduling ends up helping the OKC Thunder. This because Denver and Minnesota will play each other on the final day of regular season action.

How OKC benefit from opponents’ closing schedules:

Since only one team can win it means if the Thunder secure one more win then either Denver or Minnesota will trail them by a single game. Obviously, OKC’s goal will be to win both remaining games, but this scheduling perk affords the Thunder a bit of breathing room.

Every team in fact will play one of the six other opponents in this race except OKC. This also works to in the Thunder’s favor. Copious variations of where teams can finish exist, but the most important takeaway for the Thunder is the Nuggets vs. Wolves game.

OKC don’t have a ton of leeway elsewhere, although they do own the tiebreaker over Utah. Meaning if the squads finish with identical records would give OKC the higher berth.

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Clippers fall out:

More from Thunderous Intentions

The only squad whose loss resulted in a major change was the Clippers defeat to the Nuggets which eliminated LA from the race.  Of all the teams who competed for a playoff berth the Clippers went through the greatest change and adversity.

Chris Paul exited via a sign and trade to the top ranked Houston Rockets. At season start the Clippers inked Blake Griffin to a long term deal with visions or retaining him as their centerpiece. However, another ill timed injury and perhaps a rethinking of the franchise principles led to Griffin’s trade to Detroit.

Jerry West‘s fingerprints are all over the recent moves made by LA with the re-upping of perennial sixth man Lou Williams. The addition of Tobias Harris to the squad offered another perfect piece for the restructured core unit.

Decisions will still need to be made this offseason regarding free agents Avery Bradley and Montrezl Harrell. Furthermore, Austin River and DeAndre Jordan have player options which they’ll likely exercise.

On some nights this seasons the Clippers more closely resembled a G-League squad given their copious injuries. So the job Doc Rivers and his roster did to even remain in the playoff race this long deserves a hat tip.

Daily Updates:

Thunderous Intentions will update this chart daily for your perusal so you can keep track of the race and what’s coming.

As for the big win last night check out our team’s recent offerings. Sinjin Snopes serves up his set of player grades and thoughtful recap. Meanwhile, Gideon Lim offers a must read film room piece breaking down Russell Westbrook‘s fourth quarter defensive effort.