5 Pieces Sam Presti should acquire this summer to turn Thunder into title favorites

The Thunder should try to acquire these pieces in the offseason.
Oklahoma City Thunder, Sam Presti
Oklahoma City Thunder, Sam Presti / BRYAN TERRY/THE OKLAHOMAN / USA TODAY
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The Oklahoma City Thunder have arrived a bit earlier than expected. They are one of the youngest teams in the NBA, but still in title contention. Oklahoma City is fighting for the top seed in the Western Conference and will have a top-four record in the league. There is still work to do to become title favorites, though.

Shai Gilgeous-Alexander is in the MVP conversation (subscription required), and the 25-year-old is just getting started. Jalen Williams and Chet Holmgren have star potential. They are just starting to blossom, and the Thunder have talent around them. Sam Presti and his front office have built a core that could have them in contention for the next decade-plus if they can keep it together. Some players are not leaving, but the Thunder are not done.

They have a mountain of draft capital and are ready to contend. Presti has top-end talent. He needs to find the right pieces to bring it all together, and here is what he should be searching for this summer.

5. Backup center

Chet Holmgren is 7’1 and his floor spacing makes him one of the most dangerous stretch fives in the NBA. He is Oklahoma City’s center of the present and future, but Holmgren needs some time to develop. He is listed at 195 pounds and his lack of strength and mass can become problematic when facing the biggest players in the league.

The Thunder are 27th in rebounds and struggle against teams with size inside. They lost three of four to the Lakers with Anthony Davis and split against the Timberwolves with Rudy Gobert and Karl-Anthony Towns. Those are problematic matchups unless Oklahoma City adds a big man.

The Thunder need a center to clean the glass and control the paint in certain matchups. It will allow Holmgren the ability to roam and make plays as a help defender. Oklahoma City tried by signing Bismack Biyombo and Mike Muscala, but neither cracked the rotation. They need a quality option who can play minutes when the games matter most if needed.

The Oklahoma City Thunder must add a backup center, but it is far from their only hole if they want to take over as title favorites. Sam Presti has more work to do.