Player News - Thunder

Date: Team: Pos:

Domantas Sabonis said he will play in the Orlando Summer League.

He said he has a "specific schedule" with the Thunder for improving his game and he's also planning to suit up for the Lithuanian National Team. Sabonis had a decent role with the Thunder in 2016-17, but his minutes trailed off following the arrival of Taj Gibson. It's worth noting that Gibson is a free agent this summer, so Sabonis' role for 2017-18 hinges on the status of his 31-year-old teammate. Sabonis finished the season with averages of 5.9 points, 3.6 rebounds, 1.0 assists, 0.4 blocks, 0.5 steals and 0.6 triples in 20.1 minutes per game.
Source: Oklahoman
Apr 27 - 11:06 AM

Andre Roberson said he would "definitely" like to stick with the Thunder this summer.

The 25-year-old defensive stopper averaged 6.6 points, 5.1 rebounds, 1.0 assists, 1.0 blocks, 1.2 steals and 0.6 triples in 80 regular-season games, but played the best basketball of his career in the playoffs. In the first-round series vs. Houston, Roberson averaged an impressive 11.6 points, 6.2 rebounds, 1.8 assists, 3.4 blocks, 2.4 steals and 1.4 triples. Those defensive stats are intriguing, but fantasy owners are still waiting for his offensive game to come around. He should be looking at a significant raise this summer and hopefully he expands his game during the offseason.
Source: Oklahoman
Apr 27 - 10:58 AM

Alex Abrines said he won't play in Summer League this July.

He said he'll be working with the coaches in Oklahoma City this summer. "I know I'm still not the best defender, but I'll keep trying to be the best defender I can," Abrines said. As most have heard, the OKC second unit was thrashed in the playoffs, so any improvement on defense could go a long way for Abrines.
Apr 26 - 5:08 PM

Nick Collison said he plans to play next season "for sure."

His contract is up, so the 36-year-old forward may be moving on from OKC. He's been with this franchise since its Seattle days and has been a veteran presence despite only playing in a grand total of 128 minutes this season.
Apr 26 - 4:01 PM

Enes Kanter said he will work on developing a 3-point shot this offseason.

Adding a 3-point stroke to his arsenal would be nice for Kanter's fantasy value, but he might also want to focus on improving as a defender. As long as Kanter is inept on defense, he likely won't average much more than 20 minutes a night, and therefore, won't be much more than a late-round guy in fantasy hoops.
Apr 26 - 1:58 PM

Taj Gibson said it would be his preference to re-sign with the Thunder as an unrestricted free agent this offseason.

"The goal is to try to stay. I would like to stay, but we have to wait and see. I love playing here in OKC," said Gibson. Gibson was a nice fit in OKC, but the Thunder will essentially go into this offseason with zero cap space after giving massive extensions to Russell Westbrook, Victor Oladipo and Steven Adams, so Gibson will likely be wearing a different jersey next year unless he's willing to play for the minimum.
Apr 26 - 12:38 PM

Russell Westbrook will be eligible to sign an extension with the Thunder this summer worth roughly $220 million over five years.

Should Westbrook accept that deal, he'll become the highest paid player in the NBA with a $40 million annual salary, but he also could just play out his current contract in order to become an unrestricted free agent during the 2018 offseason. It'll be interesting to see how this situation plays out, but Westbrook is guaranteed to spend at least one more season in OKC, so he'll make for a fine top-5 pick in next year's drafts.
Source: ESPN
Apr 26 - 10:15 AM

Enes Kanter played just three minutes in Tuesday's Game 5 loss to the Rockets and finished scoreless on 0-of-2 shooting.

After a solid regular season with averages of 14.3 points, 6.7 rebounds, 0.9 assists and 0.5 blocks on 54.5 percent shooting in 21.3 minutes, Kanter only played 9.0 minutes per game in the series against Houston because he was a huge defensive liability. He has a couple years left on his deal and should reprise his role as the first big off the bench for the Thunder in 2017-18 unless they decide to go in a different direction.
Apr 25 - 11:34 PM

Victor Oladipo scored 10 points on 4-of-17 shooting in Tuesday's Game 5 loss to the Rockets, adding six rebounds, one steal and two triples in 34 minutes.

Coach Billy Donovan tweaked his rotation so that Oladipo would run the point for the second unit, but he didn't play well in that role and the Rockets outscored the Thunder by 18 points during Russell Westbrook's six minutes on the bench. Oladipo was flying off draft boards in the second and third rounds of a lot of fantasy drafts this season, but only returned eighth-round value in standard leagues with averages of 15.6 points, 4.4 rebounds, 2.6 assists, 1.2 steals and 1.8 triples. Playing next to a usage rate monster in Westbrook certainly didn't help things and Dipo battled through a couple nagging injuries, but the 24-year-old SG will look to bounce back in 2017-18.
Apr 25 - 11:29 PM

Russell Westbrook scored 47 points in a 105-99 Game 5 loss to the Rockets on Tuesday as the Thunder were officially eliminated from the playoffs.

Westbrook played 42 minutes and was a +12 during his time on the court, but once again the Thunder melted down when he went to the bench. He finished 15-of-34 from the field with 11 rebounds, nine assists and seven turnovers. Westy was absolutely gassed by the end of the game and finished just 2-of-12 in the fourth quarter, and he also forced too many perimeter shots -- he hit 5-of-18 shots from beyond the arc. The MVP candidate had an epic season and broke Oscar Robertson's record with 43 triple-doubles, posting averages of 31.9 points, 10.8 rebounds, 10.4 assists, 1.7 steals, 2.5 triples and 4.2 turnovers on 42.2 percent shooting.
Apr 25 - 11:12 PM

Enes Kanter saw just eight minutes off the Thunder bench during Sunday's Game 4 loss, ending his evening with two points, two boards, one block and one turnover.

Over the past three games, Kanter has only seen the floor for 8.5 minutes a night, which obviously isn't enough time for him to make a meaningful impact on the box score. His awful defense is the reason why he's not playing, so don't expect his minutes to jump in Game 5.
Apr 23 - 7:56 PM

Steven Adams did a little bit of everything during Sunday's Game 4 loss to the Rockets, tallying 18 points, seven boards, two assists, one steal, three blocks and two turnovers in 37 minutes.

There was an awkward moment when Adams and Russell Westbrook appeared at the podium for their post-game news conference when a reporter asked Adams why the team struggled when Westbrook came off the floor, and Westbrook refused to let Adams answer the question, citing keeping the team together as his reasoning. The strange exchange can be viewed in the link below. As for Adams, this was arguably his best game of the series, and he'll need to bring a similar effort during Game 5 in Houston for OKC to have a chance of seeing a Game 6.
Apr 23 - 7:50 PM

Victor Oladipo scored 15 points on 7-of-10 shooting during Sunday's Game 4 loss to the Rockets, adding one 3-pointer, four boards, two assists, two steals and two blocks in 39 minutes.

After struggling through the first two games, Dipo has stepped it up over the past two, pumping out averages of 13.5 points, 5.0 boards, 2.0 assists, 2.0 steals, 1.0 block and just 0.5 turnovers per game on 66.7 percent shooting. He'll need to keep the efficient trend going for the Thunder to have any chance of sending this series back to OKC for a Game 6.
Apr 23 - 7:42 PM

Andre Roberson racked up the defensive stats during Sunday's Game 4 loss to the Rockets, recording five blocks and two steals through 38 minutes of floor time.

Roberson also added 13 points, one triple, four boards and three turnovers to his stat line, and he did an excellent job of making life difficult for James Harden. Unfortunately, Billy Donovan refused to pull Roberson late when the Rockets started going with a hack-a-Roberson strategy, and Roberson proceeded to go just 2-of-8 from the charity stripe, which was a misstep that certainly factored into OKC blowing their fourth-quarter lead.
Apr 23 - 7:36 PM

Russell Westbrook notched his third straight triple-double during Sunday's Game 4 loss to Houston, racking up 35 points, 14 boards, 14 dimes, three triples, three steals, one block and five turnovers in 39 minutes.

Westbrook already had his triple-double by halftime, and he became the first player in NBA history to record three straight 30-plus-point triple-doubles during the postseason. He scored 18 of his 35 points during the fourth quarter while posting an unfathomable 61.5 usage rate, but he also forced up a ton of shots and finished the game with just 10 makes on his 28 attempts. He'll assuredly again be posting an insane stat line in Tuesday's Game 5, but it's looking like that might be the last game of this MVP-series.
Apr 23 - 7:25 PM


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