There are losses that hurt. There are losses that agonize. And then there are losses that make you question everything.

For the Thunder, Tuesday night’s season-ending loss to the Trail Blazers falls into that last category.

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For the third consecutive year, the Thunder failed to make it past the first round of the NBA playoffs. Recovering from the sting of this particular elimination will take longer than usual, though.

Damian Lillard’s stunning game-winner didn't just end the Thunder’s season. It raised serious questions about whether the future of the franchise has been placed in the correct hands. The inability of Russell Westbrook to lead his team deep into the Western Conference playoffs without Kevin Durant is now a glaring mark on his resume.

The topic of Westbrook’s value has always been a contentious one, of course. Those that value analytics and shooting in the modern NBA are annoyed by his shortcomings. Those that prefer the eye test will point to his unmatched energy and intensity, plus the insane number of triple-doubles over the past three seasons. However, regardless of where you stand in the Westbrook debate, there is no escaping one fact — Westbrook's playing style simply hasn't worked when it matters most, and it's hard to see why it ever would going forward.

His unwavering confidence has turned him into an eight-time All-Star, but it can also be his greatest flaw. Westbrook tends to fall back on the only way he knows how to play — full throttle. On Tuesday night, much like we have seen throughout his career, it came back to bite the Thunder.

Westbrook posted a 29-14-11 triple-double in Game 5, but he shot just 11-of-31 from the field. He finished at 36.0 percent from the field and 32.4 percent from 3-point range for the series. For the third consecutive year, Westbrook shot under 40 percent from the field in the playoffs and under 33 percent from beyond the arc.

This shouldn't come as much of a surprise considering Westbrook's regular season. Among the 43 NBA players who took at least five 3-pointers per game and 400 total 3-pointers this season, Westbrook landed dead last in 3-point percentage (29.0 percent). And as ESPN's Zach Lowe noted, Westbrook's once strong midrange game has disappeared.

Playoff opponents know the scouting report — the Blazers were literally yelling "back up" at defenders when Westbrook had the ball on the perimeter — and that's why Westbrook's most recent elimination games look like this:

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The elimination game statistics highlight what makes Westbrook so captivating and so frustrating. That same fire that many deify, well, it comes with a cost. It’s very difficult to win a playoff series when one player feels the only way to do so is to win it alone with hero ball.

Oklahoma City's last offensive possession of the 2018-19 season tells you everything you need to know.

Paul George had it going from the start in Game 5. He finished with a team-high 36 points on 14-of-20 shooting from the field. It should have been his shot, his game to decide. And yet, once again, Westbrook just couldn’t help himself.

Just as he couldn’t help himself from being sucked into a one-on-one battle with Lillard, or falling into a bizarre feud with a local reporter. In that critical moment, when the Thunder needed him to defer to the better player, Westbrook returned to his old ways.

Westbrook is 30 years old and has $171 million left on his current contract. His new deal with the Thunder in 2017 helped to heal the wound Durant left behind when he departed for Golden State. Because of his loyalty, Westbrook is untouchable in Oklahoma City.

But as he begins to age out of his prime, and his postseason failures mount, the questions about his ability to lead OKC will intensify. That last possession illustrates what happens when a star's speed and athleticism dips even slightly. A worse player with the same do-it-all attitude would put a hard ceiling on the team's level of success.

Maybe it’s not the worst thing to have a player that cares too much. By all accounts, Westbrook is a good guy, a family man that did right by the city that chose him.

But Tuesday night’s loss is difficult to dismiss. Westbrook’s playoff resume will be difficult to forget. And everything will be questioned in OKC.

Unlike when he is in front of the local media, Westbrook will need to find some real answers.