Grade the Trade: Thunder are title favorites after new blockbuster proposal

Luguentz Dort, Oklahoma City Thunder
Luguentz Dort, Oklahoma City Thunder / Patrick McDermott/GettyImages
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The Oklahoma City Thunder are taking no prisoners in their first playoff run, flexing their muscles over the short-handed New Orleans Pelicans and taking a 3-0 series lead. The brief playoff jitters they displayed in Game 1 are in the rearview mirror and they seem well on their way to moving on to the Second Round.

Ahead of the Thunder lies a formidable path, however.

Luka Doncic and Kyrie Irving have the Dallas Mavericks in the driver's seat to advance over the LA Clippers and each are tested playoff veterans. If the Thunder can find a way to get past them in a semifinal matchup, it's likely Nikola Jokic and the Denver Nuggets would be their eventual conference finals foe.

Beyond that, the Boston Celtics are the most likely opponent should the NBA Finals be attainable. While talented enough to beat any of these aforementioned teams, the Thunder won't be favored against the Nuggets or Celtics.

The Oklahoma City Thunder may need to add one more piece

The biggest thing that the Thunder need is experience, and they are gaining that this postseason. Come next year's campaign, they will be seasoned and ready to truly push for a title. OKC is also armed with a war chest of draft picks that is so deep they cannot possibly use them all.

As a result, making a trade to further upgrade the rotation seems very possible, if not even inevitable.

What kind of player would be the ideal fit with their trio of stars? With Shai Gilgeous-Alexander running point and Jalen Williams becoming an elite secondary on-ball option, the Thunder don't need to fill the top two slots in their offensive pecking order, making it an easier path to finding the ideal player.

Add this to the fact that Chet Holmgren has been terrifying teams while serving as a stretch center, and it seems like a player at the two or three would be the one to target.

Let's head east to the Atlantic coast to find the ideal player to add to this roster and propel them from upstart challengers to title favorites in the Western Conference as soon as next season.