Colin Cowherd on the chances Oklahoma City misses the NBA playoffs this season

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Colin Cowherd talks Oklahoma City Thunder. Could Russell Westbrook's squad miss the NBA playoffs this season?

- I'm not going to say this is going to happen. But what I'm going to tell you is it's still possible it will happen, and perhaps it's likely, although my guess is it won't. At the end of a regular season in the NBA, it is really hard to predict what teams you get. I mean, some teams are tanking. Some teams are resting. Some teams are prepping for the playoffs.

This is like a-- I was talking to my buddy Ryen Russillo yesterday about this for like a half hour. The end of an NBA season, am I'm supposed to take this Sixers winning streak seriously? They're beating crap in the East. They're beating teams that are tanking. I don't know what to make of it. So let me just say this. It's very difficult to figure out what the hell I'm supposed to do in this last, like, two weeks of the regular season.

But let me just lay this out. Oklahoma City and Westbrook are at Houston tomorrow, at Miami Monday.


They could lose both those games. Right now they're the six seed. But because the West is so jammed, they could go from a four seed to out of the playoffs by Monday-- at Houston, at Miami. If Russell Westbrook misses the playoffs, MVP, All-Star Paul George, best rebounder Steven Adams arguably in the game, and a declining yet still Hall of Fame player in Melo, this will be the most talented team to ever miss the NBA playoffs. Will you finally acknowledge I'm not a hater on Westbrook? He's just damn hard to play with.

Paul George-- do we understand how devastating this is? When I say to you Phi Slama Jama, what do you think? That's the best college team to never win a title. That's their brand. Their brand is, oh, that's the best college team, most NBA talent, couldn't even win a championship. And Guy Lewis has been branded as a bad coach because of that.

When I say Dan Marino, his brand isn't all the records. The first thing most people think of, best quarterback never to win a Super Bowl. That's a big part of the brand. This is going to be a mark that's going to be devastating on Westbrook's career. And it will be the first thing you think of. It's not going to be the MVP. A lot of guys have won that. When you say Karl Malone, he won an MVP. You don't think of that. You think, could never win a championship. Derrick Rose won an MVP. You don't think of that. You think, can't stay healthy. Phi Slama Jama, Dan Marino, Derrick Rose, Karl Malone, you don't think of their great play.

If Russell Westbrook as an MVP, with an All-Star wing, a Hall of Famer, and the best rebounder arguably can't make the playoffs, you tell me a star that will ever want to play with Westbrook again, because Paul George is gone. You're not sitting around eating at Applebee's to not make the playoffs. He's not having his brand diluted like that.

And if you have any connections in the NBA-- and most reporters do-- Paul George isn't gloriously happy right now, getting fewer shots and worse shots. He's in the worst shooting slump of his career. I'm going to say there's a connection to Westbrook. You don't have to.

But the teams the Thunder are competing with for the playoffs, the Pelicans for instance, play the Suns tonight. The Suns are tanking. The T-Wolves play the Lakers tonight. They're not healthy and not great. The Nuggets play the Clippers tomorrow. They're a nonplayoff team. OKC and Westbrook, at Houston, at Miami.


By Monday night, Tuesday morning, they could be out of the playoffs. You can like Westbrook all you want. You know what you think of when I say Karl Malone, and it ain't the MVP. You know what you think of when I say Dan Marino, Phi Slama Jama, and Derrick Rose, and it ain't the points and the touchdowns.

Not making the playoffs-- I'm not a hater of Westbrook, never have been. If you've played the game and watched it for 40 years, you cannot deny he is hard, hard to play with-- wildly gifted, but hard as heck to play with. And by Monday, we could have an all-new identity with Russell Westbrook. I don't think it's going to happen because I think this-- I think the Rockets are resting people tomorrow night. But beating Houston in Houston if Harden and Paul play, and Clint s just look at the numbers. They don't lose much when they all play.