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Wednesday Bolts: 12.11.19

Wednesday Bolts: 12.11.19

Trade season nears, and Kevin O’Connor (The Ringer) reports that the Thunder have made their veterans available.  “Speaking of the Oklahoma City Thunder: OKC remains a playoff contender even after trading Westbrook and Paul George last offseason. The Thunder are just 11-12, but that’s good enough today for the 7-seed in the West. Despite their moderate success, plans haven’t changed; Paul, Danilo Gallinari, Steven Adams, and other veterans are all available, according to league sources.”

O’Connor also reports in the same article that the Portland Trailblazers intend to make a play for Gallinari.

Related: Word is that Adrian Wojnarowski (ESPN) reported on The Jump that the Thunder don’t feel a need to move anyone, with a potential playoff appearance in sight.

Erik Horne (The Athletic) writes that even with trade season looming, the players are still enjoying the moment.  “‘I think we’re having fun right now,’ Thunder guard Chris Paul said. ‘Obviously, it’s nice to win, but at the end of the day, it’s nice that we’re all cheering and rooting for each other.'”

NBA Canada debates who will be better in three years: Shai Gilgeous-Alexander or Donovan Mitchell?  “With SGA, I know what I’m getting. I’m getting poise, I’m getting production and a potential low maintenance All-Star someday. He’ll never be the go-to-guy or franchise player, but he’ll be a key piece to any team he’s on. SGA will always be a positive addition to any team he’s on, I’ll take that on my side any day of the week.”

If you didn’t already know, Steven Adams took his first career charge against the Utah Jazz, and he’s on a mission to make sure everyone knows, says Maddie Lee (The Oklahoman).  “In the locker room after the Thunder’s 104-90 win over the Jazz Tuesday, Adams fielded questions about playing the role of point guard in one pick-and-roll, and his approach to scoring against Rudy Gobert. But what he really wanted to talk about was The Charge.  It was, as Adams suggested, worthy of headlines.”

It was a beautiful charge, I have to say.  Textbook.

Nick Crain (Forbes) ponders: with the Thunder in the playoff picture, should they want to be there? “Making the playoff in nine of the past seasons, many thought that hot streak would come to an end in the 2019-20 season after unloading Russell Westbrook and Paul George in the offseason. Although early, the Thunder are positioning themselves to continue their playoff run with the currently constructed roster.  Is that the best idea?”

Luguentz Dort logged his first NBA points against the Blazers and followed it up with a career-high nine points against the Jazz, but the real treat is the fun the team is having in supporting Dort:

Early leader for adorable moment of the year: Darius Bazley couldn’t contain his excitement before hearing his name introduced as a starter in Utah.  Imagine how he’ll feel being introduced in Chesapeake Energy Arena...

Abdel Nader watch:  The Thunder remain unbeaten with Nader as a starter this season.