After appearing in the playoffs, the Oklahoma City Thunder went into rebuild mode, as they finished with a 22-50 record, good for the 14th seed.
They have some promising young players, but what really should we expect from the Thunder this year?
Oklahoma City Thunder 2021-2022 Season Preview
To begin with, they ended up trading Al Horford, Moses Brown, and a second-round pick to the Boston Celtics for Kemba Walker, a first-round pick, and a second-round pick. Regardless, Oklahoma City ended up reaching a buyout with Walker.
Most of the moves they made throughout this off-season was in the draft. They drafted some promising talent like Josh Giddey, Aaron Wiggins, Tre Mann, and Jeremiah Robinson-Earl. Along with Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, the Thunder have a solid foundation to work around.
Speaking of Gilgeous-Alexander, perhaps the biggest move the Thunder made was extending him to a 5-yr/$172M deal. By locking in their star player, the Thunder at least have a bright future moving forward.
Overall, the Thunder didn’t do anything too exciting in the off-season since we knew that they were just going to focus on the draft. The Thunder’s offseason plans included drafting, creating more flexibility financially, and development throughout the roster.
Moving forward, the Thunder are headed in the right direction. For all we know, they could be an absolute juggernaut in five years. It’s safe to say that they had a relatively solid off-season, regardless if they didn’t do much in free agency.
Oklahoma City Thunder – Expectations For This Season
It’s fair to say that the Thunder will be one of the worst teams in the Western Conference. That doesn’t mean that they don’t have anything to work with though.
They have a solid core and Thunder fans should be excited for their development and future. Their ceiling is the 11th seed, while their floor is obviously dead last in the conference.
Regardless, Gilgeous-Alexander will have an all-star like season, as he averaged 23.7 points, 4.7 rebounds, and 5.9 assists per game. Along side him were the players Oklahoma City drafted: Giddey, Wiggins, Mann, and Robinson-Earl.
Giddey is a great all-around player, as he averaged 1o.9 points, 7.4 rebounds, and 7.5 assists per game, while Mann averaged 16.0 points per game while shooting an outstanding 40.2 percent from behind the arc.
As for Wiggins and Robinson-Earl, we’re not exactly sure how many minutes they will get since they’re going to be on the back-end of the roster. We can expect to see them every now and then, but we can’t say that for sure just of yet.
Wiggins averaged 14.5 points and 5.8 rebounds per game with Maryland, while Robinson-Earl averaged 15.7 points and 8.5 rebounds per game.
This team has an exciting young core, and they definitely have something to look forward to as the season progresses. That being said, the Thunder are more likely to miss the playoffs.
There should be no expectation for the Oklahoma City Thunder next season, as they have made it known for awhile now that they’re in complete rebuild mode. Check back in three to five years though!
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