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The Thunder are only one win behind the first-seeded San Antonio Spurs, so it's very likely that the Spurs could drop down to the second seed, especially if they rest their starters at the end of the season like they normally do.
The key for the Rockets in this series is finding a way to slow down Tony Parker.
In four meetings this season, Parker has averaged 24.5 points, 5.5 rebounds and 9.0 assists on 57.6 percent shooting from the field as he led the Spurs to a 3-1 series victory. It's been obvious in those games that the Rockets' team defense is rather weak, and Parker took full advantage of this opportunity.
This Spurs team is also seventh in the league in offensive efficiency and third in defensive efficiency. There's a reason why they have the best record in the Western Conference, and they are simply a better team than the Rockets right now.
In order for the Rockets to beat the Spurs, they will need their role players to step up. Harden will get his numbers, but he cannot carry this team to victory in a grueling seven-game playoff series.
Parsons is the most important player in this series. He has a size advantage against all opposing Spurs' small forwards, and he can defend up to three different positions. It's likely that Parsons will be on Parker at times, and his length and quickness could provide for a much better matchup.
Chances of winning a playoff series: 3/10