Sam Presti, What Are You Up To?

By: Walter Agnitsch

Well, Thunder fans we haven’t had much of a break this offseason from Kevin breaking our hearts to Russell melting them and Presti robbing the Magic. Now it’s time for Thunder NBA preseason to begin. The Thunder wrapped up their preseason tour in Spain with a win against FC Barcelona. The Thunder went one and one losing against Real Madrid. There are very few takeaways from these games because of how little Russell Westbrook played, Steven not playing against FC, and Cameron Payne not playing at all.

The first takeaway is Coach Donovan seriously thinking of starting Domantas Sabonis at the four spot? Sabonis looked good for his first two games playing for the Thunder, he was able to step out and hit the three and run around on defense. If they are actually considering starting Sabonis it either means they think he is NBA ready or maybe they are planning to trade Enes Kanter. Either way teams with a rookie in their starting lineup better be ready for the rookie mistakes and for a Thunder fan who is already on edge because they lost Kevin it could be a nerve-racking season. The second takeaway is Oladipo and Kanter have the offensive ability to make up the scoring lost by Serge Ibaka and Kevin Durant. Oladipo had 34 points against Real Madrid, and Kanter had 24 points against FC. The last takeaway is Alex Abrines can shoot the long ball. Against Real Madrid Alex hit two clutch threes at the end of the game. Alex can make an impact on this Thunder team without needing many shots.

Sam Presti was interviewed at the blue and white game and may have given us some insight on if he was going to make a trade before the start of the season. What Sam said was that it was hard to say but he was always looking. He said there wasn’t a lot of talking going on now because teams want to see what assets they have and what they look like together. He said this about when he thinks about making a trade, “I like to add pieces to maximize the current pieces on the team.”

Here are a few trade ideas that Sam could be thinking about pulling.

OKC Thunder Receive Sacramento Kings Receive
Rudy Gay Ersan Ilyasova
  Mitch McGary

This seems highly unlikely because Rudy has two years left on his contract, and the Kings will want more for him than this. Stranger things have happened though especially with the Kings weird deals. The Thunder are looking to move Mitch because of his off the court issues, and it was proven with the Thunder trading for Joffrey Lauvergne.

OKC Thunder Receive Washington Wizards Receive
Kelly Oubre Jr. Cameron Payne
Jarell Eddie Josh Huestis

This deal seems pretty one sided because Kelly hasn’t proved much in this league. The Thunder could also add Mitch McGary and offer them for Otto Porter. These two are small forwards with a lot of potential.

OKC Thunder Receive Chicago Bulls Receive
Jimmy Butler Enes Kanter
  Cameron Payne

This is the deal all Thunder fans are talking about including Thunder radio voice Matt Pinto. I don’t think the Thunder should take this deal Cameron and Enes are going to make up a bunch of the offense and Jimmy is more defense than offense. The Thunder could also offer Ilyasova, Singler, Payne, and a draft pick for him. The Thunder in a heartbeat would take that deal, but the Bulls would never take that.

OKC Thunder Receive Miami Heat Receive Charlotte Hornets Recieve
Michael Kidd- Gilchrist Enes Kanter Chris Bosh
Justise Winslow Spencer Hawes  

This deal would seem ideal for the Thunder receiving two young players that can play the two, three, or four. The only problem with this deal is, is Chris Bosh going to play again? Right now according to the experts it doesn’t seem likely. If he can play at the all-star level again he would be a good fit with the Hornets.

OKC Thunder Receive Denver Nuggets Receive
Wilson Chandler Ersan Ilyasova
  Kyle Singler

This is, in my opinion, my favorite trade. You are getting a veteran who can shoot the three, who is athletic and can get a stop on defense. The Thunder don’t need another superstar they need another good small forward to buy into the Thunders new defensive philosophy. This also fits into Sam’s criteria for a trade to add pieces that maximize the current pieces. This way you keep Enes Kanter which is very important for his offense.

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