Adrian Wojnarowski (ESPN) reporting a H-O-R-S-E competition including Chris Paul upcoming. “Players would be filmed competing at home locations — on indoor or outdoor courts — and compete shot for shot in the traditional playground game, sources said.”
Ryan Novozinsky (Daily Thunder) gives Sam Presti’s case for Executive of the Year. “Presti built this by being one of the only executives in the league who isn’t afraid to try something new. The Thunder system got stagnant in the past few years, so he changed it up completely. Instead of running it back, he sold high (with an assist from Kawhi Leonard) on the Thunder’s best players. This paved Oklahoma City’s way to the 5 seed in a very strong Western Conference. For an executive to trade his two superstars and come away with a 5th seed, on top of about a million first round picks, is extraordinary.
Presti magic is real, and it’s the reason the Thunder have thrived this season and are set to thrive for years to come.”
Daily Thunder’s 2019-20 report card for Shai Gilgeous-Alexander. “Shai Gilgeous-Alexander led Oklahoma City in points scored and minutes played, appeared in the Rising Stars Game and Skills Challenge at the 2020 NBA All-Star Weekend, and settled the “Fresh Prince of OKC” debate for Daily Thunder. As Dom Flaim recently wrote, SGA’s leap from year one to year two was an objective marvel, and gave subjective reassurance for Thunder fans worried about a post-Westbrook future.”
Cray Allred (Daily Thunder) gives his report card for Steven Adams. “His game, and media charm, remained as dependable as always while the cast of characters around him spun in every direction. This season also confirm another thing: how very health and rest reliant Adams is. Credit goes to Billy Donovan and Nerlens Noel for minimizing the need to wear Adams down despite his legitimate tough-guy desire to play through pain. After missing a mere twelve games over the last four seasons, Adams skipped six 2019-20 contests through 64 games. His 27 minutes a was lowest among Thunder starters and in the bottom-20 for all NBA players with more than 40 starts.”
Chris Paul to Timothy Rapp (Bleacher Report) “We’re All Playing the Sit-and-Wait Game”. “As long as we have the conversations about it and try to make sure that guys are prepared as possible, I think we’ll be fine,” Paul said. “I’m happy guys want to know what’s going on, and guys want to be informed. I can’t say it enough: I think we’ve got the best body of players in our league.”
The Athletic’s writers from each Northwest division team discussed MVP, biggest surprise and top playoff challenger roundtable style. “The Thunder were supposed to be sellers and Paul basically said no to that, gifting fans with at least one more season before the teardown. Despite their limitations (rebounding, a lack of size on the wing defensively, 3-point volume), the Thunder fear no opponent because of Paul and his ability to control late-game situations. Of the five Northwest Division teams, the Thunder is the only one to have already exceeded their preseason projected win total.”