Am I a homer? Heck yeah. I’m a fan of the team I write about. It’s not a difficult concept. I like to write about things I’m familiar with. I know basketball, but more specifically, I know Thunder basketball. So I write about it.
Predictions are always a difficult thing when it comes to sports. They are usually made with the caveat that a ton of variables remain static. Things such as injuries, front office moves, suspensions, chemistry can’t be taken into account.
When you look at these 20 predictions, know two things: 1) They are likely going to favor the Oklahoma City Thunder in some form or fashion. And 2) Because I know a little about basketball, I’ll never make a prediction so outlandish that it won’t have a chance of coming true. Without further ado, here are the predictions:
20. Josh Huestis will play over 750 minutes this season for the Thunder.
In his first two seasons, Huestis played a grand total of 86 minutes for the Thunder. But the third year forward looks determined to get some minutes this year, and his play in the preseason may warrant some looks. While 750 minutes may seem like a lot, that’s just 9.2 minutes per game over 82 games. I think Huestis will be a full-time NBA player this year and will get enough playing time to reach that minutes mark. Continue reading 20 Thunder-centric predictions for the season→
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One preseason game down. Oklahoma City Thunder fans finally got to see what Paul George and Carmelo Anthony will look like in Thunder uniforms. It didn’t always flow smoothly, but the set-up for something bigger was there. The two of the Big 3 who played put their vast array of skills on display. George showed his overall ability (offense and defense) and Anthony showed his shot-making ability.
Were there hiccups? Of course. George and Anthony overpassed a little, leading to a couple turnovers. In addition, they seemed a little lost on how to use Steven Adams. The chemistry developed between Russell Westbrook and Adams took about two seasons to actually produce fruit. It would be foolish to think the new players on the team would have immediate chemistry with the old players on the team. Continue reading Pelicans vs. Thunder Primer (Preseason Game 2)→
Danny Chau (The Ringer) looks at the Thunder’s best and worst-case scenarios in his preview: “What apprehension exists in Melo’s fit doesn’t exist for George, who has exhibited all of those qualities and abilities in his time with Indiana—he can create his own shot, spot-up, position himself off the ball, and defend just about every position. He is not only the perfect running mate for Westbrook—he’s just about the perfect running mate for any franchise player. The Thunder will go as far as their new Big Three takes them, and their talent alone suggests they could go deep.”
Tony Heim (Thunderous Intentions) with five take-aways from last night’s game: “Throw away the score when you break down this game. While Mike D’Antoni was focused on working Chris Paul with his main playing partners, Billy Donovan used the time to get Oklahoma City’s young prospects valuable playing time. Terrance Ferguson, Daniel Hamilton and Josh Huestis all got at least 14 minutes; they all looked pretty good too. More importantly, Carmelo Anthony and Paul George looked comfortable in Billy Donovan’s offense. There were obviously moments where players were late to screens and misreading teammates, but overall the ball movement on offense is already better.” Continue reading Daily Thunder Rumblings – 04 Oct 2017→
Before we even go into specifics, there are three things you need to know about this game:
It was the first preseason game for both teams.
The Thunder were without Russell Westbrook, Patrick Patterson, and Alex Abrines.
The Houston Rockets launched 55! three-pointers (Why?)
In essence, the Thunder treated this game like it was a preseason game. Work out little kinks here and there, let the starters get comfortable with each other for the first half, and find out what you have from the bench. Houston, on the other hand, almost treated this game like it was a regular season game. The eight players who will likely be prominently featured in Houston’s rotation all played over 20 minutes, with James Harden leading the way with 29 minutes. Continue reading Rockets beat the new look Thunder 104-97→
David Purdum (ESPN) on ESPN’s odds going up with the acquisition of Anthony: “After acquiring Paul George and Carmelo Anthony in an active offseason, the Oklahoma City Thunder’s odd have moved from 60-1 to 16-1 to win the 2017-18 NBA championship at the Westgate SuperBook in Las Vegas. With George and Anthony joining reigning MVP Russell Westbrook in Oklahoma City, the Thunder have narrowed the gap with the other top tier of contenders in the Western Conference. The Houston Rockets and San Antonio Spurs are each listed at 15-1 to win the championship at the SuperBook.”
Earlier this summer, it was reported the Thunder had agreed to a partially-guaranteed deal with Thomas. My thinking was that it was just for summer league and possibly for the G-League when it came time for that. But it still stuck in my head whether he would be with the Thunder during training camp or not. So I decided to ask the source, himself. Continue reading NTTB Rank: 11-8→