15-15 after 30 games, Oklahoma City Thunder stars still trying to figure things out
From NBA media reports
The Oklahoma City Thunder have made some progress. After going 1-9 in games that were within five points in the last five minutes through November, they’re 7-1 in those games in December. But that accounts for all seven of their victories this month, when they’ve yet to win comfortably.
Their late-game defense has been better, but their offense remains mediocre, ranking 24th, both in December and for the full season. With their defense ranking second, they’ve been good enough for a low seed in the Western Conference, but they didn’t trade for Carmelo Anthony and Paul George to get back to the playoffs and lose to a top-3 seed again. Through the first 30 games of the season, no team has been more disappointing.
Still, it’s not yet time to give up and start talking trade. As Bleacher Report‘s Ken Berger writes, the Thunder’s stars want to figure this out…
Barely two regular-season months into his OKC tenure, George hasn’t been able to mesh with Westbrook and Anthony, and the team is 15-15 and on the fringe of the playoff picture. So as rival teams begin wondering if George could be available at the trade deadline if the Thunder’s struggles continue, there’s something else worth wondering: If George concludes that his Oklahoma City experience will be one-and-done, will he be inclined to give the Thunder the same kind of heads up?
“Well, I think this is a different scenario because it’s our only year together as far as we’re on one-year contracts,” George told Bleacher Report. “I want to put everything into this and see where that takes us. I’m not giving up; I’m not giving in. I want to give this thing everything I have and we’ll see where it goes.”
George is right about himself and Anthony, 33, being on one-year deals; each has a player option for the 2018-19 season. Westbrook, 29, signed a five-year, $205 million extension in September that keeps him under contract until 2022-23.
“We all enjoy playing with one another,” George told B/R. “This could possibly be me being here for multiple years. But … I’m not going to just throw it in and be like, ‘No, I’m done with this.’ We’ve got a long, long, long season ahead of us. And I’m committed to that.”