Plotting the dream offseason for the Oklahoma City Thunder this summer

Luguentz Dort, Oklahoma City Thunder and OG Anunoby, Toronto Raptors
Luguentz Dort, Oklahoma City Thunder and OG Anunoby, Toronto Raptors / Mark Blinch/GettyImages
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The Oklahoma City Thunder are set up to make a run in the playoffs this season. Their team is strong on both ends of the court and they have a legitimate MVP candidate in Shai Gilgeous-Alexander. They are young, but they are better than most any "young" team to make its first postseason in recent years.

Whatever happens in the playoffs, the Thunder will hit the offseason looking to continue building a better team around their young, dynamic core. What kind of steps should the Thunder take to put together the best team? Let's plot out a dream offseason, not in terms of each individual move but the kind of moves the Thunder should pursue to hit their ceiling.

Move on from Aleksej Pokusevski

The promise of Aleksej Pokusevski was tantalizing when the Thunder traded up to take him with the No. 17 pick in the 2020 NBA Draft. If the seven-foot Serbian could put together a package of skills including ball-handling, passing and shooting, he would be the kind of NBA unicorn that transforms a franchise.

"Poku" has had his share of incredible moments, but they come too infrequently for him to be an impact player in the NBA. The Thunder have actually found a unicorn replacement in Chet Holmgren, and there simply isn't room on the roster for Poku any more; he has played only 60 minutes all season. It will be time to cut him loose when he hits free agency this summer.

Retain the Non-guaranteed guys

While the Thunder should move on from Pokusevski, they have three players who are on non-guaranteed contracts for 2024-25: big man Jaylin Williams, wing Aaron Wiggins, and shooting specialist Isaiah Joe. All three players should be brought back next season.

If the Thunder have a trade offer on the table that involves one of those three it's reasonable to include them in a deal; none of them will be starters barring an unexpected step forward in development. Yet each is on a bargain contract and can provide real rotation minutes on a really good team. Inexpensive, dependable role players are worth keeping around.