Last night Sam Presti pulled another rabbit out of his cylinder. The Thunder’s Gm completed an incredible (and unexpected) trade that brought Paul George to Oklahoma City in exchange for Victor Oladipo and Domantas Sabonis.
The Thunder’s GM is known for operating behind the curtains. He confirmed it once again on draft night:
“We’re involved in everything. We’re going to pursue everything. Don’t be upset just because it’s not spewing out of this building, that we’re not pursuing the same things that you read about on the internet. We’re going to make all those calls. We’re going to pursue all those things.”
He kept his word. They pursued in silence and they got it done.
Despite losing two good young and hard working players, this is definitely a huge upgrade for the Thunder. George is not only an All-Star but also a solid two-way player. He can score from everywhere, he can create his own shot and he is a tough defender (George made three all-defensive teams). He is exactly the type of player Oklahoma City was missing since Kevin Durant’s loss.
Paul George played seven seasons with the Indiana Pacers. Last year he averaged 23.7 points, 6.6 rebounds, 3.3 assists while shooting 46% from the floor and 39.3% from behind the 3 points line.
If Oklahoma City decides to re-sign Roberson and Gibson comes back, this team might have one of the best defensive starting five in the league: Westbrook, Roberson, George, Gibson/Grant, Adams. It will be very hard to score on these guys.
This trade is exciting for Thunder’s fans and shows that the organization is will to surround Westbrook with great players even though it might be considered a risky move. Let’s not forget that George never kept his interest for the Lakers a secret and he will be an unrestricted free agent next summer.
There will be more rumors around the Thunder in the next days (Roberson, Gibson, Carter-Williams, Randolph, Rudy Gay) but the main question/concern remains the same: will Russell Westbrook sign the five years extension or will he play this year out and taste free agency next summer alongside his new teammate George?