Recently, 2K released their All-Time Teams for all 30 of the teams in the league. While many teams have their own history, the Oklahoma City Thunder are still having to share their history with the Seattle Supersonics. When their released their all-time team for the Thunder, the team featured 4 Thunder players and 11 Sonics players.
Here’s a look at the team:
Now, don’t get me wrong. I don’t disagree with anything on that list. The Sonics had a long, storied history in their 41 years in the Pacific Northwest. They won a championship in 1979 and their list of players includes several Hall of Famers. (On a side note: Why the hell is Shawn Kemp not in the Hall of Fame. He was one of the best PF’s in the league in the 90’s, averaged a double-double for six consecutive seasons, is a 6x All-Star, and a 3x 2nd Team All-NBA. What more does a man need on his resumé?)
But the Sonics have enough history to have made their own team. Of the four Thunder players on that list, only Kevin Durant actually played for the Sonics during his rookie season. The rest of the players have never called Key Arena their home arena.
Although the Thunder are just now entering their 10th season of existence, they’ve had a fair amount of talent come through the Chesapeake Energy Arena (or Ford Center, if they were here early enough). So I’m going to present to you, the real All-Time team for the Oklahoma City Thunder.
There are a couple stipulations for this list, though. First, the players has to have played for the Thunder previous to the 2017-18 season. Unfortunately, players like Paul George and Patrick Patterson could not be included on the list. Secondly, the rating I’ve given the players is based on how they would likely perform in a “dream, all-hands on deck, everyone is playing like they did when they were with the Thunder” scenario. And thirdly, the player had to have played with the Thunder for at least one season (for example: Caron Butler is a no go because his time on the Thunder was for less than half a season). Without further ado, here is the list:
|All-Time OKC||97||Kevin Duarnt||Starter|
|All-Time OKC||96||Russell Westbrook||Starter|
|All-Time OKC||95||James Harden||Starter|
|All-Time OKC||88||Serge Ibaka||Starter|
|All-Time OKC||86||Steven Adams||Starter|
|All-Time OKC||85||Reggie Jackson||Bench|
|All-Time OKC||85||Enes Kanter||Bench|
|All-Time OKC||85||Dion Waiters||Bench|
|All-Time OKC||84||Victor Oladipo||Bench|
|All-Time OKC||84||Kevin Martin||Bench|
|All-Time OKC||80||Nick Collison||Bench|
|All-Time OKC||79||Derek Fisher||Bench|
|All-Time OKC||78||Andre Roberson||Bench|
|All-Time OKC||73||Thabo Sefolosha||Bench|
|All-Time OKC||70||Kendrick Perkins||Bench|
The starters are a given. Those have been the best five players for their positions throughout the history of the Thunder. The bench is where it gets a little tricky. Dion Waiters, Victor Oladipo, and Kevin Martin each played for the Thunder for less than two seasons, but all three left an indelible mark while they played in Oklahoma City.
I penciled in Reggie Jackson as the best reserve of this bunch because the man was a talent when he was with the Thunder. His value may be decreasing after a few lackluster seasons in Detroit, but when he was with the Thunder (and when he was focused), he was just what they needed. Enes Kanter has been the best reserve big man the Thunder have ever seen. While his production on the offensive end may not mask his deficiencies on the defensive end, the talent that Kanter possesses is undeniable.
Thabo Sefolosha and Derek Fisher are more role player extraordinaire than special talents. Sefolosha was the defensive anchor on the perimeter for the Finals run, while Fisher provided the championship experience and floor spacing. By themselves, they likely wouldn’t be on a best of list. But in conjunction with their time on the team, the impact they made was very important.
Nick Collison is Nick Collison. The No-Stats MVP. Any all-time Thunder team has to have Old Man Thunder on there. While he’s never averaged more than 10 points or 10 rebounds per season, he’s been the glue that has filled in the cracks for this team. When the Thunder needed a defensive big man against the likes of Zach Randolph, Tim Duncan, or Pau Gasol, there was Collison ready to sacrifice his body. Some impacts are not stats-driven, and that’s how Collison gets on this list.
Kendrick Perkins and Andre Roberson are flawed players. This much I know. But they’re also very important to successful runs for this team. Perkins provided a service when the NBA was still overrun by dominant big men. And Roberson is basically doing the same thing now, but from the perimeter. The Thunder have a short history. As they progress, these two players should be the first ones to start falling off the list.
On a 15 man roster, someone had to be left off. And that someone was Jeff Green, who was part of the original young core that spearheaded the Thunder when they arrived in the Great Plains. The Thunder were probably a little ahead of their time in playing Jeff Green as a stretch-4 from 2008-2011. The personnel on the floor was no conducive to having a power forward who could not rebound and could not defend the paint in the early going. Eventually, that led to the team trading Green for a stronger post presence in Perkins. But while Green was here, he never averaged less than 15.1 points per game and was one of the young team’s most consistent players.
Nine years is not a long time to glean a lot of talent. But the Thunder have had their fair share of good to great players step on to their hardwood. It will be interesting to see what the Thunder’s All-Time team will look like on NBA 2K28.