The Thunder and the Pacers are surviving. Together.

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If I asked at the very beginning of the season, 'Who do you think, Heat and Spurs aside, has the best chance of making the NBA Finals?' the likely answer would have been Indiana and Oklahoma City.

And why not? The last we saw of the Pacers, they were a big, physical defensive force that took the Heat to the brink of elimination in the east finals.

The last time we'd seen a fully healthy Thunder squad they were ripping through the west, following a trip to the NBA Finals.

But, a funny thing happened on the way to dethroning last years conference champs.

The Thunder have run into one of the best seven seeds in history, and the Pacers lost their way nearly three months ago, and are hanging on for dear life against an eight seed that finished the regular season six games under .500.

Both teams though, won road game sixes facing elimination, and will have all of the momentum in the world heading home for the one game playoff.

With both coaches firmly on the hot seat and rumors already swirling about UConn head coach Kevin Ollie, who played for OKC in 2009-10, and Lionel Hollins a seemingly perfect fit in Indiana, the story lines heading into the weekend will be as juicy as they are numerous.

Despite all the coaching drama and the MVP talk about Kevin Durant, who has likely won the award, but it won't be announced until the second round starts, this Friday will come down to the two greatest words in team sports.

Game seven.

Indiana Pacers
Oklahoma City Thunder
Kevin Durant
NBA Playoffs

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