OKC Thunder fans might want to scratch Isiah Thomas off Christmas card list

Isaiah Thomas, OKC Thunder ranking (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
Isaiah Thomas, OKC Thunder ranking (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images) /

NBA Hall of Famer Isiah Thomas doesn’t believe the OKC Thunder will make the playoffs despite re-signing Paul George and offseason depth improvements.

Excitement is mounting as OKC Thunder players will arrive for Media Day on Monday, September 24 and begin training camp on Tuesday, September 25. Aside from Russell Westbrook and Andre Roberson the core of the team will be on hand to prepare for the 2018-19 season. Sam Presti’s aggressive offseason was geared toward adding depth and filling specific needs. This translates into arguably the most options and deepest squad in Billy Donovan‘s Thunder tenure.

Coinciding with the start of training camp analysts and pundits will announce their power rankings and projections for where each team will finish. To date, most reports have been extremely favorable for the OKC Thunder. Vegas and ESPN both rank the OKC Thunder to finish with a home court seed as do a number of pundits.

Sports offers varying opinions and naturally any teams other than the Golden State Warriors and Boston Celtics will be placed in the queue behind these squads. Therefore it is important to remember this is simply someone’s opinion. That said, the debate between former NBA players Steve Smith and Isiah Thomas offers a perplexing prediction. Moreover, some of Thomas’ reasons seemingly contradict other squads placed well ahead on his list.

Thomas reasons for leaving the OKC Thunder out of the playoff picture completely is primarily based on injury. In the above video, Thomas speaks to Russell Westbrook‘s knee surgery and points to Paul George needing to get re-acclimated.

The other point the Hall of Fame point guard makes is he doesn’t believe Westbrook and George are enough citing teams with three of more All-Stars or core players. In a stacked Western Conference those reasons are fair.

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But, how then does Thomas rank the Lakers sixth? Consider the fact he speaks of the need for PG to re-acclimate with a team he’s familiar with. Why then would LeBron James playing without any All-Stars on a brand new squad not need time to transition?

Or what about the Spurs who he places seventh. Did Isiah forget Tony Parker and Kawhi Leonard are gone and Manu Ginobili retired? Does Thomas not envision some adjustment time for DeMar DeRozan?

Smitty on the hand, ranks the OKC Thunder where the majority of analysts do among the home seeded squads. Hey, every analyst will have an opinion and substantiation for it, I’m simply pointing out the inconsistencies.

Thomas was one of the Rockets biggest supporters last season and despite the loss of two key defensive players (Trevor Ariza and Luc Mbah a Moute) still ranks Houston to finish second.

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Whatever his reasons, we’ll afford him a thank you, pass it along to the OKC Thunder locker room for some motivational purposing. And, I’m just joking about the Christmas card, since we’ll be in Houston to deliver it in person.