NBA / Feb 18, 2009 / 10:54 am

The Thunder Are Looking To Win Now

Kevin DurantKD

Watch out, but with a solid, young nucleus, the Thunder are looking to win now. Feeling the pressure of the econony and putting people in the seats, owner Clay Bennett isn’t going to wait and watch his franchise player, Kevin Durant, walk in a couple years after the losses star to take their toll on their star.

Perhaps the realization came after KD dropped 46 in the Rookie/Sophomore game and single-handedly secured the W for the Sophs. Or perhaps it came when they actually landed Tyson Chandler from the Hornets yesterday. But regardless of when the epiphany occurred, the wheels are in motion.

According to the Sacramento Bee, the trade that sent Chandler to Oklahoma City might have increased the chances that the Thunder win the John Salmons sweepstakes. With a starting lineup of Durant, Jeff Green, Russell Westbrook and Chandler, “the Thunder appears motivated to add a guard such as Salmons and still retain the pieces to make it happen (expiring deals and draft picks).”

With Salmons on the roster, how good are the Thunder?

Source: Sacramento Bee

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  • Heckler…formerly ‘yallallreadyknow’

    so who’s gonna play the PF spot?

  • Lets Go Hawks

    Damn. I thought they were solid before. Now if they can just get Chandler to play like he did last year, they’ll be set. Although, I think adding Salmons may affect their chemistry negatively

  • Kobeef

    Green for now plays the PF (KD is at SF, Westbrook PG, Chandler C) but long term the Thunder can probably find a better option at the 4. Green is a talented player but is not an elite PF.

  • MoxWestCoastRep

    Good enough to get a late lottery pick instead of a top 3.
    If they can keep this team together for 2 or 3 more THEN they will be contenders.
    My guess…KD bolts for a big market. It would be sweet karma for all the PNW folks…

  • Kobeef

    Also, in case you were wondering, KD officaly became a superstar this week. Not only does he score like few others but he can single handedly carry a team to a win. Imagine what he’ll be like when he gets some strength

  • Lets Go Hawks

    I just think if they get lucky in the lottery (not talking Blake Griffin Lucky, just top 2 or 3) and land James Harden, that becomes a killer core

  • Scott

    So how long until Green is moved? It seems like they’re going to run into problems with KD and Green realistically both pure SF’s. Then again, how far off are Green’s numbers to a guy like David West’s or LA’s as a PF.

    Salmons is 29 too, so its weird they’d want him. You’d think they would go after a younger SG who can grow with the nucleus instead of one that’ll be long gone by the time KD and Westbrook hit their prime.

    And with a kid like Griffin in the draft, is it really wise to start improving your talent through trading this year? I mean stay committed to your plan for at least this season. Reap the rewards of good draft position, and focus on getting talent after that.

  • E$

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hAPAEa5ejxQ

    I only tune in to the Thunder for KD, the guy is beastly!

  • !

    yeah… i was just telling someone that. why would they want Blake Griffin in the draft. they already have Green at the 4 spot.

    i dont know about Westbrook though he is not a pg.

  • Kudabeen

    Agree with post 2.

    I like Salmons talent, but he needs a strong coach and vets…

    Salmons will sulk that Durant (a younger player) takes so many shots…even if he makes them.

    It has to be a better option than Salmons…

  • Drink the Haterade (KB24 Chip 09)

    I bet they get Blake Griffin in the draft, think about the trade chips they have, such as draft picks and Green, but seriously I smell conspiracy, you know with Griffin in the line up the crowds would increase. David Stern anyone

  • flavur

    I think they should trade some draft picks for martell Webster of portland who can score and he is young. My god this team is gonna be so good in a year or two and KD is definitely an all-star next year whose gonna be the best sf in the west now CARMELO or KD in a year or two definitely KD.

  • Bron42 aka Your Moms Best Friend

    webster sucks…they should just ride it out this year and go for someone like harden or meeks and then some big bodies with the laker pics.

  • Brown

    I’d play Durant at the 2 and look for a 4.

  • Yoooo

    Green is good, no reason he cant be a more athletic David West… Boy got talent

  • http://www.espn.com Sho-Nuff

    I need KD’s ratchet for one game in the league I play in. I’d put up a 50 spot and never play again.

  • rell

    David West made a comment that OKC is starting to resemble Portland and the way they build up their teams. I think he is right. OKC is going to get another lottery pick this year and will be about $9-10 million under the salary cap this offseason.

    I wouldn’t trade for Salmon. I would wait till the offseason and see if Boozer opt out of his contract. If Boozer don’t I would go after Milsap. If neither Boozer or Okur opt out, Utah can not afford to pay Milsap without getting a huge luxury tax penalty.

    A lineup of Westbrook/Durant/Milsap/Chandler would make them Portland 2.0. All they would need to get is a shooting guard and their starting lineup would be set.

  • rell

    Also, seeing how quickly Durant is improving I just can’t help but feel sorry for the Seattle fans who Bennett stole the team from. I bet Bennett can’t never set his foot in Seattle again. David Stern also should watch out anytime he goes to Seattle again too.

  • SayItAintSo

    Durant is walking away in a few years and it has nothing to do with the number of losses that the Thunder will have at that point in time.

    He will walk away because he has tons of money, is young and lives in one of the most BORING cities in the U.S.

  • Chaos

    Green comes off to me like a Odom type player. same size and close to the same skill set…except he can be more consistent in his game. hes tall, athletic and not your prototypical PF but he’s seems like he could fit in. i think he could get hurt most of D when he plays a Boozer type player. He does score and rebound also. i think Salmons would screw up whatever chemistry they do have

  • pittball

    Now that the deal is off…do the Hornets still look to move Chandler? Do the Thunder make another move? It’s obvious that Wilcox, Smith, and Earl Watson aren’t in the future plans of this organization.

    What sort of impact does this have on the Hornets if they are stuck with TC now? Obviously d.West and CP3 will be happy, but does a guy who’s had trouble finding motivation in the past use this to fuel the fire? Or does he shut it down.