The race for the eighth seed in the Western Conference can’t get any more suspenseful as the Oklahoma City Thunder and New Orleans Pelicans still have the same record.
The Pelicans currently hold the tiebreaker and are eighth as the Thunder are ninth. The Thunder’s playoff chances appeared to be in grave danger after point guard Russell Westbrook received a technical foul on Sunday.
However, the NBA has rescinded his technical, keeping his amount of technical fouls throughout the season at 15.
16 technical fouls in a season equal an automatic one-game suspension, and this would have been deadly for the Thunder since they will play the Portland Trail Blazers next.
Westbrook scored a career-high 54 points in Sunday’s game against the Indiana Pacers, but it still resulted in a loss. The Pelicans lost to the Houston Rockets.
He has made himself a legitimate MVP candidate while playing in the absence of 2014 MVP Kevin Durant, but his campaign will inevitably suffer if the Thunder miss the playoffs.
The Thunder’s two remaining games will be against the Blazers and the Minnesota Timberwolves. The Pelicans will play the Timberwolves on the road before returning home to face the red-hot San Antonio Spurs.