Sam Presti presser 5 takeaways: small markets, George comments, franchise direction

Russell Westbrook #0 of the Oklahoma City Thunder (Photo by Layne Murdoch/NBAE via Getty Images)
Russell Westbrook #0 of the Oklahoma City Thunder (Photo by Layne Murdoch/NBAE via Getty Images) /
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OKC Thunder
OKC Thunder, Paul George (Photo by Scott Varley/MediaNews Group/Daily Breeze via Getty Images) /

Presti takes high road, but doesn’t agree with PG assessment:

No matter how you slice it or take Presti’s wording of the Paul George trade being adversarial it’s clear this was not what the GM or the team expected.

George implied in his Clippers press conference he re-signed with the OKC Thunder under the premise it would be a one year experiment. The star went on to say this was a mutually agreed to factor again implying Presti, Russell Westbrook and the franchise all were on board with this.  That statement is ludicrous and there are so many offsetting facts which point to it being so.

Presti certainly doesn’t go out and spend money to add free agents (Alec Burks, Mike Muscala) and make concerted efforts to bring back Nerlens Noel if he thinks this is the case.

Even if you assume George is spreading gospel then go back to the NBA draft and ask yourself if Presti is trading down. It would be far more likely the GM who loves to do draft day deals would’ve actively been assessing options to move up or trade George to land assets.

His draft and free agency actions simply aren’t indicative of how Presti functions if he thinks his two superstars want out. The GM emphatically stated his priority entering the offseason was not on trading PG. Presti stated the team was excited to bring it back this coming season but did note the end of next season would’ve necessitated a long hard look given George would be entering what would be the final year of his contract given his player option.

Moreover, Rockets GM Daryl Morey made it clear in his introduction of Westbrook to Houston they only became aware of the possibility to add Russ once the George trade occurred.

If Presti knew both his stars wanted out of OKC at season end, he doesn’t wait until a week has passed in free agency to get involved in trade talks.