Daily Thunder Rumblings – 16 June 2017


Enes Kanter thinks Russell Westbrook will finish out his career in Oklahoma City: “Enes Kanter has been very outspoken this summer, but this time it was about Russell Westbrook. In an interview with SI.com published Thursday, the Thunder center said he thinks Westbrook, who isn’t a free agent this summer but is eligible for the Designated Veteran Player Exception contract which would keep him in Oklahoma City an additional five years, will stay with the Thunder his entire career. “One thing I saw about him is he’s a loyal guy,” Kanter said. “I understand he’s from L.A., he loves L.A., he goes to L.A. every summer, but he’s a loyal player. “I think he’s gonna finish his career in Oklahoma City.”

In the midst of a Jerry West to LA Clippers article, we start to see the bread crumb-like rumors of Blake Griffin possibly going to Oklahoma City: “Paul also has plans to talk with the Houston Rockets and Denver Nuggets, one executive said. Griffin can sign a five-year deal worth $175 million with L.A., or sign a four-year deal worth $130 million with another team. The Boston Celtics and Oklahoma City Thunder are two teams that will make a bid for Griffin, according to several executives.”

The Thunder Buddies podcast looks at what a Kevin Durant title says about the Thunder.

Erik Horne looks at draft prospect Semi Ojeleye: “While Ojeleye has had an elite body since being named 2013 Parade Magazine National Player of the Year as a senior in Ottawa, Kan., he wasn’t a hit at the onset of his collegiate career. Ojeleye started at Duke and played 17 games as a freshman in 2013-14, but played only six as a sophomore before transferring. He sat out the 2015-16 season and his first semester at SMU this season before winning American Athletic Conference Player of the Year with the Mustangs as a junior. SMU played the 93rd-best schedule in the NCAA last season, which raises questions about the jump in competition for Ojeleye from a non-Power 5 conference to the NBA. But what’s unquestionable is Ojeleye’s offensive efficiency during the 2016-17 campaign.”

Enes Kanter: Game recognize game.

Fred Katz on the Thunder not needing to keep the 21st pick: “Oklahoma City is scheduled to go 21st come June 22’s NBA Draft. But there’s a chance it may never make its pick. The Thunder could end up trading out of the first round altogether, holding onto their first-rounder just in case someone high on their draft board slips to them but then dealing it come their time to select. They would hope to bring back a future first-rounder and a 2017 second in the hypothetical exchange. Of course, the NBA doesn’t allow teams to go two years without a first-round pick, and the Thunder have already dealt their 2018 first-rounder to Utah and another future first-rounder to Philadelphia. So, if OKC decided to flip its first-rounder, it would likely have to come to a deal in principle before making the pick and then select on behalf of its trade partner come its turn, a not unusual procedure. The trade would be consummated some time after the selection. Why is this a possibility? It comes back to money.”

Enes, what are your feelings on Kevin Durant going to the Warriors.

If living in a home once owned by Thunder assistant coach Maurice Cheeks is on your bucket list, it’s time to get your checkbook out: “The luxurious one-time home of former Philadelphia 76ers point guard and head coach Maurice Cheeks, a leading member of the team’s 1983 championship roster, has hit the market on the Main Line. Sold by Cheeks in 1993, the Wynnewood home 1121 Remington Road was recently listed with Coldwell Banker Preferred at an asking price of $1,575,000.”

Rumble visited Alex Abrines yesterday.

Former NBA commissioner David Stern discussed the Sonics’ move with former Sonics reporter Nunyo Demasio: “When asked about the team’s transition in ownership from Howard Schultz to Clay Bennett, Stern said Schultz was surprised by how hard it was to sell tickets. “He’s a great marketer, but he wasn’t selling a lot of tickets in Seattle, and he sold the team. And Clay Bennett bought it; Howard made a good profit.” And once Bennett had the team, Stern noted “he couldn’t get a building done. He hired lobbyists — he did all kinds of things, and it didn’t work.”

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