Thunder: Pass or Pursue on 5 potential offseason targets

Oklahoma City Thunder v New York Knicks
Oklahoma City Thunder v New York Knicks / Dustin Satloff/GettyImages
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Proposed Thunder target No. 3) Isaiah Hartenstein

Perhaps the most popular offseason target being discussed of late, Isaiah Hartenstein is a player who seems to fit the bill for exactly what this Thunder team is looking for in a back-up big man.

With his ability to set hard screens, defend the rim, and crash the boards, the 26-year-old has been viewed by many as a legitimate option for Presti and company this summer, and, in Almanza's eyes, "he’d be a great addition."

"Rebounding was one of OKC’s biggest weaknesses this past season, and Hartenstein can help patch that... Hartenstein is the prototypical rim-running big who scores most of his points near the rim and off of assists."

Clemente Almanza

Coming off a career year with the Knicks, the sixth-year pro went on to average 7.8 points, 8.3 rebounds, 2.5 assists, 1.1 blocks a night, and would only up his production during their exhilarating two-round playoff run where he dropped 8.5 points, 7.8 rebounds, 3.5 assists, and just shy of a block per game on 59.2 percent shooting from the floor and 50.0 percent shooting from distance.

Him serving as a reserve big, or even as a spot-starter could prove to be a game-changer in many ways for the Thunder, as he proved to be a true difference-maker with New York this past season.

Unfortunately for Oklahoma City, however, as a result of his uptick in production, many project that Hartenstein will command quite a pretty penny on the free agent market this summer, with Jake Fischer of Yahoo Sports noting that he "will be able to draw at least $80 million, and perhaps upward of $100 million" over a four-or-five-year span which, as noted in the previous slide about Simons, could be a financial issue for the front office to deal with in about one or two seasons.

Nevertheless, should the Thunder's brass feel the big man's intangibles in both production and style of play to be what could help beef up the team's frontcourt that was absolutely manhandled by the more physically dominant Mavericks in the Western Conference Semifinals, then perhaps overlooking this financial predicament in the meantime could be worth the future headache.

Verdict: Pursue