This is DTR and here’s your Thunder news for this Monday.
Brett Dawson wrote a great article on the 365-day scouting process that culminates on draft night: “There was no shot at the kid from Indiana. Oklahoma City held the 12th pick in the 2013 NBA Draft, and he would be off the board long before that. By the second pick, as it turned out. There was never a chance he’d fall so far. But at the Draft Combine in Chicago that spring, the Thunder met with Victor Oladipo anyway. “Because you never really know what’s going to happen down the line,” said Will Dawkins, OKC’s director of college player personnel.”
Fred Katz on the important, not so simple decision the Thunder face with Jerami Grant’s future: “If the Thunder pick up the team option, Grant would be an unrestricted free agent after next season. Declining it would turn him into a restricted free agent this summer, when the Thunder would be able to match any possible offer sheet he signs to bring him back to Oklahoma City for the same price. He would also be hitting the open market while still an unfinished product. Grant contributed to the Thunder this season because of his defensive versatility and athleticism, but he’s still raw. And teams still wonder about what type of player he could become.”
Former Thunder player Sebastian Telfair was arrested in Brooklyn on Sunday: “Former NBA player Sebastian Telfair was arrested early Sunday in Brooklyn on gun possession-related charges, police told NBC 4 New York. Telfair, 32, and another man, Jami Thomas, 18, were found with three loaded firearms, a semi-automatic rifle, ammunition and a bullet-resistant vest, police said. Two bags of marijuana and a burning marijuana cigarette were also allegedly found in the 2017 Ford F-150 pickup with Florida plates.”
Nick Gallo on how the Thunder’s role players can be effective if they stick to their strengths: “There are other players on this Thunder squad, and throughout the NBA, whose skills are more specific and more weighted to certain aspects of the game. Those players can be equally as impactful as some of those well-rounded stars, but it means maximizing their talents and minimizing deficiencies. Throughout the roster, the Thunder has players for whom that description could fit. Alex Abrines and Doug McDermott are marksmen from the perimeter. Jerami Grant’s defensive versatility and shot blocking is a marvel to behold. But two players in particular have put themselves in the running for NBA-level accolades. Enes Kanter has been a Sixth-Man of the Year candidate each of the past two seasons, and Andre Roberson made strides forward again in 2016-17, placing him squarely in the All-Defensive Team conversation.”
Seattle is still working towards getting a new arena built: “Look at the hero we associate with saving the Seahawks – Paul Allen – and the hero we associate with saving the Mariners – Slade Gorton. Neither gave false promises, and both stepped up when this city needed them most. There was no overture, there was no hubris – only humility, followed by results. The same could be said of Sounders co-owner Adrian Hanauer, who was the perfect man to lead the MLS transition because of his loyalty to the fans, to the region, and frankly, his modesty. Now look at those considered as villains: From Clay Bennett to Howard Schultz, to Ken Behring to Jeff Smulyan, and even former Seattle mayor Greg Nickels. There was no loyalty. There was no humility. There was everything from lip service to boastfulness to a total lack of contrition. There was no loyalty to the region – no feeling like any of them were doing a service to our community.”