Erik Horne (NewsOK) with one of the major developments from the Thunder’s first preseason game: The Dennis Schröder/Steven Adams pick and roll: ““I spend time with him, mate,” Adams said of the chemistry between him and Schroder. “It’s more about finding out what you like, where you’re looking. Whenever you’re trying to figure out their body language in terms of them coming off screens, how they’re setting up, it helps on both sides. Especially with the passes, he will ask me what type of passes I like. It just comes down to that.”
Paul George missed the game last night for personal reasons, and it later came out that it was due to the passing of what is basically his father in law.
Horne (NewsOK) on Steven Adams developing another wrinkle to his repertoire: “In five seasons, Adams has become one of the league’s best possession finishers and savers, but with Westbrook at the helm of the offense, there aren’t many opportunities to create. Billy Donovan has talked for years about his big men being ball movers, but Adams’ involvement on Wednesday was more than just dribble handoffs.”
Jeff Case (NBA.com) previews the season for the Thunder: “The summer couldn’t have gone much better for the Oklahoma City Thunder. They retained free agent swingman Paul George, managed to trade Carmelo Anthony for a standout guard and made some other roster-bolstering moves as well. Former Kia MVP winner Russell Westbrook is still around and OKC has a squad, on paper, that can contend in the Western Conference. But will this crew mesh together better than it did last season and keep OKC from another playoff flameout?”
John Schuhman (NBA.com) with the results of the annual GM survey: “The GMs responded to 49 different questions about the best teams, players, coaches, fans, and offseason moves. General managers were not permitted to vote for their own team or personnel. Percentages are based on the pool of respondents to that particular question, rather than all 30 GMs.”
Tyler Crandall (Salt City Hoops) looks at the Thunder as a division opponent for the Utah Jazz: “The Jazz’s 1-3 loss in the season series really had a lot more to do with Jazz injuries in the early part of the season and scheduling (they played the Thunder three times in December, with more than one of those games on the second night of a back to back) than it did with the personnel and match-ups. Of course, Donovan Mitchell had not yet grown as comfortable as the alpha scorer when these two teams played their final season game on December 23, but had developed into that role heading into the playoffs.”
Michael Wilson (Sir Charles In Charge) on whether the Thunder are a legitimate contender in the West: “At the end of the day, this may be the most stacked Western Conference we have ever seen. There are no easy nights in the West. Houston is going to be hungry for another shot at the Warriors, Utah will be better, and the LeBron is now out in Los Angeles.”