Areas Of Strength
The Oklahoma City Thunder have a quality point guard situation with Russell Westbrook and Raymond Felton. Westbrook is a former Kia MVP winner and Felton a reliable veteran who runs a quality offense. OKC is a veteran team built to win now, although it has been a challenge for the Thunder to advance far in the playoffs since former Kia MVP Kevin Durant signed with the Golden State Warriors in 2016. It’s been a while since OKC had a prized rookie on the roster.
So much is uncertain with OKC until free agency, given All-Star Paul George’s options. In any event, OKC could always use another scorer to lift that burden from Westbrook. Doing so would give the Thunder a player for the future given Carmelo Anthony’s advancing age and walk into the NBA twilight. In the perfect world, the Thunder would Draft a promising swingman -- someone good enough to play his way into the rotation. Although, good luck to OKC in pulling that off without a No. 1 pick.
Two Stats That Matter
28 -- The Thunder ranked 28th in regard to both ball movement (301 passes per 24 minutes of possession) and player movement (10.2 miles traveled per 24 minutes of possession), according to Second Spectrum tracking.
11.2 -- The Thunder defense was 11.2 points per 100 possessions better with Andre Roberson on the floor (96.4 allowed) than it was with him off the floor (107.6). That was the biggest on-off DefRtg differential, by a wide margin, among 266 players who played at least 1,000 minutes for a single team.
-- John Schuhmann
The Way To Go
General manager Sam Presti has some heavy lifting to do, considering he lacks a No. 1 pick (which belongs to Minnesota, the 20th overall) and won’t select until No. 57. Presti might try to move up in the draft, assuming he has something that another team wants. Otherwise, OKC will hope for a prayer with a late second-round pick. It’s hard to know who’ll fall that far, but watch out for Virginia guard Devon Hall, who can hit 3s and defend.
2017-18 Team Stats (points per 100 possessions, with NBA rank)
Offensive: 107.6 (10th)
Defensive: 104.7 (10th)
G: Russell Westbrook
G: Andre Roberson
G: Terrance Ferguson
G: Alex Abrines
F: Patrick Patterson
F: Kyle Singler
C: Steven Adams
C: Dakari Johnson
G: PJ Dozier (restricted)
G: Raymond Felton (unrestricted)
G: Paul George (player option)
G: Daniel Hamilton (restricted)
G: Josh Huestis (unrestricted)
F/G: Corey Brewer (unrestricted)
F: Jerami Grant (unrestricted)
F: Carmelo Anthony (player option)
Recent Draft History
2017: Terrance Ferguson (21)
2015: Cameron Payne (14), Dakari Johnson (48)
2014: Mitch McGary (21), John Huestis (29)
2013: Steven Adams (12), Archie Goodwin (29), traded to Golden State; Alex Abrines (32)
2012: Perry Jones (28)
-- Shaun Powell