Shai Gilgeous-Alexander trade and 13 other genius Thunder moves Sam Presti nailed

Sam Presti and the Thunder absolutely nailed these moves.

Oklahoma City Thunder, Sam Presti
Oklahoma City Thunder, Sam Presti / BRYAN TERRY/THE OKLAHOMAN / USA TODAY
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8. Al Horford swaps

Sam Presti did some of his best work with Horford. The Thunder tore it down in the 2019 offseason or so everyone thought. Paul George was traded to the LA Clippers, and Russell Westbrook was sent to Houston. Presti made two masterful trades and left himself with a surprisingly frisky roster. They made the playoffs before more trades threw them into a full rebuild with a mountain of draft capital.

Horford signed a four-year $109 million contract with the 76ers in 2019. He had made the playoffs for 12 straight seasons and played a key role in Boston and Atlanta. The Sixers hoped he could help them reach the next level, but the veteran big man did not fit next to Joel Embiid.

Philly dumped him after one season, and Presti was eager to make the trade. The 76ers gave up Horford, a 2025 first-round draft pick, a 2020 second-round selection, and the rights to Vasilije Micic for Terrance Ferguson, Danny Green, and Vincent Poirier. It was a home run move for the Thunder. They took Theo Maledon in 2020 and got a future first-round pick for taking Horford’s contract.

They were far from done. Oklahoma City rehabbed Horford’s trade value and got another first-round pick for him when they sent him back to Boston in the 2021 offseason. The Thunder got 2 first-round draft picks and one season of Al Horford out of these two trades.