Key opponent games OKC Thunder should scout to isolate potential asset targets

OKC Thunder opponent games to key in on: Malcolm Brogdon, handles the ball vs Danny Green Photo by Ron Turenne/NBAE via Getty Images)
OKC Thunder opponent games to key in on: Malcolm Brogdon, handles the ball vs Danny Green Photo by Ron Turenne/NBAE via Getty Images) /
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OKC Thunder
OKC Thunder Jerami Grant (Photo by Zach Beeker/NBAE via Getty Images) /

Key return dates for OKC Thunder players:

Aside from Russell Westbrook (January 9), Paul George (December 22) and Jerami Grant (February 21) the other key dates will be when Chris Paul returns to Houston (October 28 ) and Shai Gilgeous-Alexander and Danilo Gallinari return to play in LA and Staples Center on (November 18).

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Key return dates

Here are the key player return dates to their former squads (including the 3 to OKC) to mark in your calendars:

Kemba Walker returns to Spectrum Center to play his former Hornets club on November 7.

Kristaps Porzingis heads back to the Mecca to play the Knicks on November 14.

TD Garden in Boston is sure to let Kyrie Irving know precisely how the Celtics fanbase feels about last season and his departure to a team in their own division on November 27.

When Anthony Davis returns to Smoothie King Center expect Pelicans fans to let him know precisely how they feel about how the Brow treated his exit from New Orleans. This return date is set for November 27.

Kawhi Leonard will collect his championship ring and be received with loud cheers on December 11. While the Raptors fanbase at Scotiabank Arena will be receptive to Leonard,  Uncle Dennis might want to skip this trip considering the unnecessary hoops he placed for Masai Ujiri to jump through with no true intention of suggesting his nephew re-sign.

No doubt the welcome the OKC Thunder fanbase gives Russell Westbrook will be among the loudest ever at Chesapeake Energy Arena. The Brodie makes his one and only appearance back with his former squad on January 9 (whoever made the schedule messed that one up). It still seems surreal Westbrook is gone and will be a very surreal moment to see him sporting another jersey. Known as the most competitive player in the NBA the other notable will be how Russ deals with the emotion of this night.

The other reason to key in on this game is General Managers who’ve repeatedly made deals will be open to working together again. That said, three isn’t much in the Rockets cookie jar Presti would likely be captivated by, but using the Rockets as a third team to make a deal work should always be a consideration.

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D’Angelo Russell returns to the Barclays Center to play his former Nets squad on February 5. Although the Golden State Warriors former finals MVP is also on Brooklyn it’s unlikely he’ll be playing due to his Achilles Tendon injury.

Marc Gasol was traded last season but makes his first appearance back in Memphis on March 28. The Grizzlies have been huge supporters of Gasol despite his exit sending congratulation messages out via social media when Gasol won the gold ball with the Raptors. Notably, this date is so late in the season Gasol may not even be with the Raptors by the time the two teams play since he is in the final year of his contract and therefore could be traded at the deadline.

Likewise, it’s expected Mike Conley will get a rousing ovation when he makes his return to Memphis with his new Jazz squad on November 15.