Without Russell Westbrook, how will/would the Thunder fare against the following prospective series:
* Rockets: Houston is a high-scoring team. The Thunder will need to make up for Westbrook's 23 points a game. Also, against Houston's three-guard lineup, perimeter defense could grow thin without Westbrook.
* Grizzlies: Westbrook's scoring is a little less valuable against Memphis, since teams rarely light up the NBA's best defensive team. However, the Grizzlies' Tony Allen now is free to help Tayshaun Prince guard Kevin Durant, making it a much more difficult series for the Thunder superstar.
* Clippers: One of the Thunder's major advantages on the Clips was Westbrook's ability to get physical with LA superstar Chris Paul. CP3's lone weakness is defending bigger, athletic point guards. That Thunder edge disappears with Westbrook gone.
* Nuggets: Against Denver, the Thunder might miss Westbrook's defense more than his offense. Nugget point guard Ty Lawson can be a pesky water bug, but Westbrook was just as quick as Lawson and much bigger. Now, that advantage is gone.
* Warriors: Golden State is going forward with a three-guard lineup, in the wake of the injury to David Lee. That means the Thunder would be even more strapped in the backcourt, if Scotty Brooks is forced to match up with the high-scoring Warriors.
* Spurs: Against a team as well-oiled as San Antonio, the Thunder would miss everything about Westbrook. His scoring. His youthful legs. His defensive versatility, which allows him to switch with Thabo Sefolosha on virtually any guard tandem in the league. But maybe the biggest void would come in attitude. In a battle royale series like the West finals, Westbrook's effort, energy and fearlessness are invaluable.
* Heat: Miami has three superstars. The Thunder had two or three last season, depending on how you want to categorize James Harden. The Heat still has three superstars. Make it to the NBA Finals again, and this time the Thunder could have only one.