The OKC Thunder are preparing for the 2022 NBA Draft, and with four valuable selections in the Draft, the rumors are swirling. This is the case every year surrounding Oklahoma City Thunder General Manager Sam Presti, given his reputation for going outside the box.
This year is no different, despite having a dream scenario unfold where the organization landed the second pick during the 2022 NBA Draft Lottery setting up the franchise to kick off their rebuild with a foundation of Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, Josh Giddey, the 2nd, 12th, 30th, and 34th picks in this years draft on top of all their other future draft assets, Lu Dort, and Tre Mann.
While this should be a stress-free time for OKC Thunder fans who not only control the 2022 NBA Draft, not only have two blue-chip players as the foundation of their core, and one of the best General Managers in the sport leading the way, some of the recent rumors have gotten to Thunder fans setting in a sense of panic.
The OKC Thunder have been thrown into every rumor during the 2022 NBA Draft process, but how much should you believe these smoke screens?
The reason for Sam Presti to be in the middle of every report or smoke screen heading into the NBA Draft is the fact that “he is a mad man! He will do anything! His draft board is never consensus!” Pair that with historic future draft assets and you have a recipe for easy “rumors.”
It is important to realize who these sources are. They are people within an organization, agents, or even players themselves. They all have agendas or reasons to share these tidbits with those of us in the media. So allow me to ask you if you are an agent for a lottery pick that wants more attention on your guy who is not included in the tier one group of three, how would you come up with a report that is a stretch but still sounds possible? You target the Thunder.
The Oklahoma City Thunder worked all season to put themselves in a position to land a top overall pick in a draft that has a clear top three (Paolo Banchero, Jabari Smith Jr, and Chet Holmgren), this is not a time to zig. However, you will hear a ton of smoke about possibly trading down or selecting Jaden Ivey at two.
What I think happened is someone within the OKC organization, maybe even Sam Presti likes Jaden Ivey as a prospect. That somehow got lost in a game of telephone, liking Ivey went to selecting Ivey with their pick. I have a feeling folks, the Thunder like a ton of draft prospects some that are valued in their pick range and some that are valued higher and lower.
At the end of the day, you can not predict the Presti, if something wild and crazy happens then something wild and crazy happens, however, all the solid reports have been that they are all-in on Chet Holmgren despite liking Jaden Ivey. Every Ivey report includes a blurb somewhere in it that the most likely outcome is still just selecting Holmgren at second overall.
Just try to stay calm these next few weeks before the Draft, and do not twist yourself into a pretzel trying to predict the Presti. No matter if you like the idea of this smoke screen or hate it, there will be plenty of time to discuss it between June 23rd and forever.