Category Archives: Trade Talk

Trade talk involving the Thunder.

Thunder Stand Pat at the Trade Deadline

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Armed with a $10.8 million dollar trade exception, several player assets, two empty roster spots, and a competitive team, it appeared like the perfect storm for Oklahoma City Thunder general manager Sam Presti to make a move to improve the team. But as the dust settled on the league’s transactions at the 3 p.m. trade deadline, the Thunder were no where to be found on the league’s trade approval docket. Having made a small trade several days earlier when they moved guard Timothe Luwawu-Cabarrot to Chicago for a heavily protected 2nd round pick, the Thunder seemed poise to make a move.

Rumors were abound that the Thunder were interested in several wings around the league, such as Orlando’s Terrance Ross or Atlanta’s Taurean Prince. In the end though, the Thunder team that went into Thursday morning was the same team that took the floor against the Memphis Grizzlies, Thursday evening. Here are three reasons why the Thunder likely stood pat during this trade deadline. Continue reading Thunder Stand Pat at the Trade Deadline

Thunder obtain Abdel Nader in a trade with Boston

NBA: Boston Celtics at Sacramento KingsIn a league where it seems like only big money contracts get traded, the Thunder have made two trades in the span of a week involving three players making exactly the same amount as second-year players on rookie minimum deals. Last Friday, the Thunder traded center Dakari Johnson and cash considerations to the Orlando Magic for Rodney Purvis.

Many viewed this trade as a cost-cutting move, as Johnson’s deal was fully guaranteed and Purvis’ deal was non-guaranteed through January 10th. The cash the Thunder sent to Orlando was likely to cover the cost of Johnson’s contract (around $1.5 million).   Continue reading Thunder obtain Abdel Nader in a trade with Boston

Thunder Trade Postscript

Many went into Thursday’s NBA trade deadline thinking the Oklahoma City Thunder would definitely be buyers in the trade market. When their defensive ace, Andre Roberson, went down with a season-ending patellar tear, many around the league thought Thunder GM Sam Presti would try to find a replacement via trade. While the Thunder didn’t necessarily have a large cache of assets, there was a sense this season would not be business as usual when it came to player transactions.

But, alas, the Thunder decided to stand pat and hold on to the assets they do have and the players currently on the roster. The thing about the trade deadline is that you usually don’t hear about the trades that didn’t get consummated. I’m more than sure that Presti did his due diligence around the league, but either the prices were too high or the cupboards weren’t as stocked as he thought they would be. Continue reading Thunder Trade Postscript

OKC Thunder 2018 Trade Deadline Primer

The trade deadline primers for team blogs are usually released about a week to two before the trade deadline. And I was planning on doing the same, but then I thought to myself, “Hold up. Oklahoma City Thunder GM Sam Presti hardly ever makes a trade that isn’t on the day of the deadline. In fact, he’s usually one of those GM’s that’s on the phone making deals until the very last second of the deadline.” With that in mind, I said to myself, “Self, we’re not releasing this article until February 8th (a.k.a. the trade deadline).”

And if you think I spend an inordinate amount of time talking to myself, you may be right. In my defense, I can’t really help it. My internal voice is the “stay thirsty, my friends” Dos Equis guy.

If I had written this article two weeks ago, it would be completely null and void because of the Andre Roberson season-ending injury that occurred 11 days. If I had written this article a week ago, I wouldn’t have seen the general cluster (you know what) the team had become in the five games after the Roberson injury. And if I had written this article before Tuesday night’s thrashing of the Golden State Warriors in their arena, then my judgement could have been clouded by the negativity of the four-game losing streak the Thunder had heading into the Warriors’ game. Continue reading OKC Thunder 2018 Trade Deadline Primer

NTTB Podcast (Episode 14) – We Got Carmelo Anthony!!!

IMG_4109On Episode 14 of the NTTB podcast, we discuss the following topics:

  • Carmelo Anthony trade (wait, what?)
  • What that means for the Thunder moving forward
  • Sam Presti Pre-season presser
  • Russell Westbrook’s “procedure”
  • Kevin Durant “Twitter-gate”
  • Enes Kanter (sad face emoji)
  • Trey Burke
  • Twitter questions

Intro/Outro music provided by OSC Productions

Thank you for listening. We will be doing a podcast once a week. If you have any Thunder or NBA related questions, make sure you hit us up on Twitter (@alexroig_NTTB or @Montero_A13).

We are on ITunes under the NTTB Podcast. Make sure you leave us a 5-star review if you can. As always, Thunder Up!

How the Warriors may force LeBron James to Oklahoma City.

lebron westbrook

I feel like I’m writing these types of articles at least once a week. Not that I’m complaining. There was once a time when the Oklahoma City Thunder weren’t even mentioned in the same breath when discussing names like LeBron James and Carmelo Anthony. But the Golden State Warriors have gone all Fresh Prince of Bel-Air on the NBA and flipped things upside down. In order to combat that, the big names of the game are figuring out, in order to compete against the Dubs, they will likely have to join forces together.

Lee Jenkins of Sports Illustrated is the premier basketball writer of his time. If there is a big story to tell, Jenkins is probably the one telling it. His stories are bits and pieces of not only the player, but also the people around said player. His articles are about as insider as they come; like a literal reality show. Don’t get him confused with Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN. Jenkins isn’t in the business to break news, he’s in it to the tell the story behind the breaking news.

When Jenkins speaks, it’s certainly not off the cuff. There is a lot of contexture behind his statements, especially when he says something that may be considered “breaking news”. He gets an insider’s view into a lot of the players’ lives, and with that, probably a lot of one on one time when the cameras aren’t on. Players tend to relax a little bit when the cameras aren’t focused on them. To say that Jenkins may “know” a player is probably understating it. Continue reading How the Warriors may force LeBron James to Oklahoma City.

Carmelo Anthony and the Thunder have a mutual interest. Is it realistic?

anthony westbrook

At around 11 am on Monday, Bill Simmons of The Ringer decided to drop this little tidbit on the masses:

First off, what the hell does circling each other mean? I remember when I was in 5th grade, I got into a little tiff with another guy on the playground during recess and we connected at the shoulders and kept circling around talking trash to each other until our friends intervened. You know the whole, “Do something!”, “No, you do something!” type elementary brawl. So is that what the Thunder and Anthony are doing? I doubt it.

Instead, I think this is just a case of someone within the Syracuse inner circle putting out that Weaver and Anthony have spoken and the Thunder are interested if Anthony is interested. Nothing more, nothing less. If anything, I think this is more of a play by people in Anthony’s camp to leverage Houston into actually getting the deal done. Continue reading Carmelo Anthony and the Thunder have a mutual interest. Is it realistic?

Paul George traded to the Thunder

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Sarah Phipps – The Oklahoman

Just as I was about to release a primer for the Oklahoma City Thunder’s foray into this summer’s free agency, Ramona Shelburne of ESPN dropped this bomb:

It was just 12 days ago that George put out the feelers that he wanted out of Indiana and was not going to re-sign with the Pacers when his contract expired after the 2017-18 season. I wrote about the Thunder’s chances of obtaining George when the statement came out. He included in his statement that he had an eye towards signing in his native Los Angeles when he became a free agent. That statement was released a full three days before the draft. The timing of the statement was no accident.  Continue reading Paul George traded to the Thunder

Do the Thunder have a chance at acquiring Paul George?

paul george russell Westbrook

At around 2:00 PM CST on Father’s Day, The Vertical’s Adrian Wojnarowski released the following tweet:

First off, the timing of the tweet makes it very purposeful. Over four days before the NBA Draft is due to take place gives the Indiana Pacers plenty of time to receive trade offers that have some meat behind them. While many will look at this as a negative move from Paul George’s part, it actually likely helps the Pacers in the long run.

No one in the NBA wants to see a lame duck season from a player or a team. That’s what the 2017-18 season would’ve been like for the Pacers had they allowed George to just go through the motions next season. With this definitive statement from the George camp, both sides can now put into motion the necessary steps to move forward from this break-up. Continue reading Do the Thunder have a chance at acquiring Paul George?

Oklahoma City Thunder acquire Randy Foye from the Denver Nuggets

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The Oklahoma City Thunder acquired Randy Foye from the Denver Nuggets on the trade deadline. The Thunder gave up DJ Augustin, Steve Novak, and both of their 2016 2nd round picks (theirs and Charlotte’s, which was acquired in the Jeremy Lamb trade this past offseason). In Foye, the Thunder get a combo guard who is a good (not great) defender and someone who can knock down open shots. This season, Foye is averaging 6 points and 2.1 assists in nearly 20 minutes of action per game. He is shooting only 29.6% from deep, but has shot 37% from that distance over his career. He shoots much better when he is wide open. He rarely got that opportunity in Denver, but will get a lot more looks in Oklahoma City with attention grabbers like Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook on the floor.

The Thunder’s M.O. is usually to have three point guards on the roster. Foye is a good enough ball-handler to be a 3rd string point guard, while also being a good enough shooter to be a spacer off the bench. He will help the bench unit defensively and will add another ball-handler to that line-up. But his biggest value may be as a go-between for Cameron Payne as he gains experience in this, his rookie season. Payne has performed well this season, but when the lights were brightest (the Warriors game) he looked wide-eyed and shaky. Which is exactly what you’d expect from a rookie. The Thunder trust Payne, but if the stage gets too big for him come April, Foye is the perfect back-up plan to bridge the gap between this season and next season.

Many people will pan this trade, but I thought it was a good play by the Thunder. Augustin and Novak were out of the rotation and on expiring deals. Instead of just sitting on that, the Thunder decided to get a player that could possibly have an impact in the near future who was also on an expiring deal. In addition, the move generated a $3.75 million dollar traded player exception (TPE) and opened up a valuable roster spot for the Thunder.

That roster spot could be used on a buyout candidate later in the season. Names that have been thrown out as buy-0ut candidates are Kevin Martin, Joe Johnson, Lance Stephenson, and Andrea Bargnani. Players that won’t necessarily take over a starting spot, but could play a role for a playoff team.

In addition to the roster spot, the move also shaves off over $8 million dollars from the Thunder luxury tax bill. There was never going to be a move that brought the Thunder above the tax line. But any move that could lessen the blow a bit was always welcomed.

In the end, the Thunder felt they were good enough to stand where they currently were. The addition of Foye could prove to be the type of move that helps them against a Golden State in the postseason or it could just be a lateral move where the Thunder traded away two end of the bench players for another end of the bench player. Either way, what the Thunder received outside of Foye (the roster spot, the TPE, the smaller tax bill) could have bigger ramifications for the Thunder moving forward.