Presti, Like Fans, 'Excited' for Season of Thunder Basketball

As Thunder Executive Vice President and General Manager Sam Presti addressed the team's upcoming season, he stressed two of the key characteristics of Thunder Basketball: the excitement, and the fans.

"I think I can speak for everyone within the Thunder that we're excited – excited for the season, but we're also grateful for the support that we've received from everybody in Oklahoma," said Presti, who spoke to media on Wednesday while visiting a Thunder Fit Clinic at the Salvation Army Boys and Girls Club.

"We all know the type of fans that we have; we all know the type of community that this is," he noted. "It's such a close-knit place, and a place that has such tremendous civic pride.

"We're grateful for that support – and also for the opportunity to take the floor."

Following a tentative agreement between the NBA and its players, Presti and the rest of the Thunder staff find themselves preparing for an NBA season that is scheduled to start on Christmas day – just over three weeks from now.

Presti noted that though there is a lot to do to prepare, he has confidence in the Thunder's ability to get ready.

"The good thing is that everybody's in the same situation, and we've done everything we can do from a basketball operations standpoint to prepare for when this day would come," he said.

"I'm confident in the people that we have, confident in our staff, and I'm looking forward to seeing everybody back at work."

The NBA has allowed teams to open their practice facilities up to players starting Thursday, a week before training camp would formally begin; beyond that, Presti described the situation as "fluid" and stressed the hard work that has gone into the team's preparations for the start of the season.

He also credits the players for their passion for the game.

"We're fortunate – I think we have a group of guys that like to play basketball," he said.

According to Presti, the team is also fortunate to have a strong fan base that has helped drive the Thunder's success as an organization.

"Our fans are critical to our success, and they're a big part of what we've been able to establish – and hopefully build upon. We're grateful for their support, both as a team, but also as us being a part of the community," he added.

The NBA has yet to release the regular-season schedule, but with some games anticipated to take place on Christmas, Presti's thoughts on the holiday remain fairly simple.

"To be honest with you, for me – and everybody that loves basketball as much as I do and this city does – I think just having the team back on the floor is quite a gift."