The Oklahoma City Thunder has overcome a massive hurdle this past offseason. The team went through a massive restructuring that left them without superstars Paul George and Russell Westbrook.
On paper, the Thunder look destined to be bottom feeders in the Western Conference this season. However, through the leadership of Chris Paul and the emergence of Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, the Thunder are eyeballing a playoff spot. Oklahoma City has the number seven spot in the Western Conference.
They’ve done this by moving the ball and pulling off insane comebacks against teams in the league. The local narrative in Oklahoma City from fans and local sports radio is that this team is fun to watch. The isolation-style basketball under the leadership of Westbrook is a thing of the past.
Now, people are on edge as the trade deadline approaches, hoping that general manager Sam Presti doesn’t move players to keep this team intact. Also noteworthy, is the players are listening to head coach Billy Donovan as he is a candidate for coach of the year.
The Thunder will certainly be a force in the first round of the playoffs, assuming they make it. However, with the All-Star break approaching, there are areas of improvement that would help propel the Thunder in the standings.
There are three main areas the Thunder needs to work on going forward.