(Eds: APNewsNow. Will be updated. With AP Photos.) By JEFF LATZKE AP Sports Writer The Oklahoma City Thunder have faced questions all season on whether they'd be able to succeed after trading James Harden away during training camp.
Harden blossomed in Houston, becoming an All-Star and the NBA's fifth-leading scorer in his first opportunity to be a franchise's featured player. That only led to more doubts over whether Oklahoma City could possibly be better after cutting ties with one of the league's best young players.
The Thunder? They posted a higher winning percentage than in any of their three seasons with Harden. Now, nearly six months after Harden's exit, comes the real test :Kevin Durant and Oklahoma City open the playoffs Sunday night against none other than Harden and the Rockets.