By: Walter Agnitsch
Have you ever wondered if the Thunder could have kept the best players from each season to make a super team? Well, we have too! In this article, we divulge the all-time Thunder roster. For starters, this list will not include any Seattle Super Sonics unless they at least played a season for the Thunder. You Gary Payton fans don’t get mad when you see he is not on this list. This list also takes into account what the players have been able to do after they have left the Thunder. Also, a certain Pistons player will not be on this list cough cough Reggie Jackson because he was too much of a bush league player. Buckle up Thunder fans as we take you on a blast from the past as we reveal the best players wore OKC on their chest.
The Starting Lineup:
Coming in at Guard 6’3 from UCLA, number zero Russell Weessssstbrroook! This seems like a no-brainer; Russell is going to go down as one of the best point guards to ever play the game. One thing to remind Thunder fans was how much criticism Sam Presti took for drafting Russ over Kevin Love, but thank God we have Sam and not Jay Bilas. Starting off Russ did have some problems transitioning from college shooting guard to NBA point guard, he averaged way too many turnovers and took way too many shots. Mo Cheeks kept coaching him though and has turned him into the most athletic player in the NBA. If you back up on Russ he is going to shoot on you, if you crowd him he is just going to blow right by you for a nasty dunk. Russ also has the heart of a champion and will never give up on a play and certainly never quit on a game.
Coming in at guard 6’5 from Arizona State, number thirteen Jaaaaaames Harden. That’s right fear the beard Thunder fans. James was the first sixth man for the Thunder, and boy could he score. He took after Manu Ginobili for his patented euro step and cooked it up to a lethal combination of getting to the rim and shooting. James was another questionable draft pick by Sam, as many experts thought the Thunder was going to draft Ricky Rubio and move Russell to the shooting Guard position, but again thank god we have Sam as our GM and not Fran Fraschilla. James was able to win the sixth man of the year with the Thunder and averaged 17 points a game in his final season with the Thunder. Perhaps one of Sam’s biggest mistakes was giving James only an hour to look at his contract extension and then immediately traded him when Harden said no, but maybe Sam was mad at James because during the finals James spent most of his time at the clubs instead of getting ready to play the Miami Heat, either way, he is one of the best players in the NBA and we definitely miss him in OKC.
Starting Small Forward 7’0 for the ladies, 6’9 for LeBron James from Texas, number 35 Kevvvvvvin Duuuuuuuuuuuurant. All we can do is thank the Portland Trail Blazers for drafting Greg Oden with the number one overall pick all those years ago. I mean listen when his career is over he will be the all-time leading scorer. He is a seven-time all-star, MVP, and has an Olympic gold medal. Kevin has changed the game, he has the height of a center, with the ball handling of a point guard, and the shooting of a shooting guard. Kevin has done so much for Oklahoma City with his charities. He has really grown with OKC and has considered it home. Kevin has become OKC’s favorite son, and will soon win them a championship.
Starting power forward 6’10 from the Congo, number nine Serge IIIIIIIbaka. This was probably the hardest position to pick, between him and Jeff Green, but Serge got the nod because of his athleticism, and his development of his shot. Serge was drafted in the same draft that brought us, Russell Westbrook, this is probably why Presti went with Westbrook too because he knew he had his starting power forward in Serge Ibaka later in the first round. When Serge first stepped on the court you couldn’t tell if Serge even knew all of the rules to the game, but you did know he was going to come in and get blocks and ridiculous dunks. His value came when coach Bryant was able to develop him into a great defender and jump shooter to round out his game.
Starting center 7’0 from New Zealand, number twelve Steevann Aadams. Before this season has started Kendrick Perkins would have been the starter for this squad, but Steven pushed Kendrick right out of the way. Sam owes Steven a great deal because he has rewritten the James Harden deal whereas Bill Simmons would talk about that trade every day (https://bedlambrother.com/2016/05/18/how-the-flying-kiwi-is-re-writing-the-james-harden-trade/). Steven frustrates every player he plays, including Tim Duncan who he made look like he was 70 years old in the playoffs and single handily shut down the Spurs on defense, and he does it the right way. Steven has been through a great deal growing up with family troubles. He is still able to smile every day and you can tell he truly enjoys life. Thunder fans are very excited about how Steven will continue to develop next year, but honestly, I think they can’t wait to see him look like Chewbacca, which is what he said his goal was to do over the summer.
Jeff Green, Jeff was a great player for the Thunder and was considered the in the big three of Kevin and Russell. Many Thunder fans would agree some of the best Thunder games ever to watch were games three and four of the 2010 playoffs against the Lakers. It was absolutely heartbreaking to see him get traded to the Celtics but they knew it had to be done to get a big man.
Nick Collison, what can you say about Nick? He was a great player for Kansas almost winning the national championship twice. He to this day is a great player for the Thunder. James Harden owes Nick some money from that max deal because Nick was lethal on the pick and roll with him. Nick can always find the open man. He is also the greatest charge taker in the NBA. Nick is just a selfless player, always doing what it takes to better the team no matter what. He’s a great teammate and everyone in the Thunder organization loves him.
Kendrick Perkins, everyone loves Beaumont, Texas native Kendrick. Kendrick was brought in to stop the big men of the Lakers. Which he did, he was a great defensive post player, and though you couldn’t get a piece of paper under him when he jumped he definitely brought that championship experience.
Caron Butler, someone is dialing from long distance! In the one season that Caron played for the Thunder, we heard that all the time. Caron played big minutes that season and helped the Thunder secure the number one seed in the western conference, helped Kevin win his first MVP, and would have won a title too if Patrick Beverley wasn’t a dirty player and ended Russell’s season. Still, Caron has had an amazing career and will go done as one of the better Thunder players even if he only played one season.
Kevin Martin, known friend of Bedlam Brother producer Scottie Haskins (Inebriated Scottie ran into Kevin at Club Circus and immediately started taking pictures of him even though he plays for the Spurs and was playing against the Thunder.) Kevin was the prize piece of the James Harden trade at the time. He was ok for the team, but you could definitely tell he didn’t want to be on the team. He left soon after his contract was over. Still, Kevin has had a solid career and been a proven scorer throughout his career.
Thabo Sefolosha, Thabo got a lot of crap because his offense was average, but the Thunder have missed him up until now that Roberson has started to become a great defensive player. The Thunder were able to get Thabo for next to nothing from the Bulls. He was always reliable to be able to shut down the others team number one option. After the Thunder Thabo went to the Atlanta Hawks in a sign and trade deal. He was great for the Hawks until the police wrongly broke his leg for no good reason. Thabo was a great player for the Thunder and is missed.
Derek Fisher, the last spot on this twelve-man roster belongs to the man with five championship rings. The reason why Derek was so successful with the Thunder was in late game situations he would run the point and Russ would move to shooting guard. It was terrific because Derek could control the tempo of the game and shoot the rock. He would have six rings right now if Scott Brooks wasn’t so hard headed and benched Kendrick Perkins. Nevertheless, Derek was a great point guard for the Thunder and was fun watching him and Russ bring the ball up.