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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6. Drafting Jalen Williams

Sam Presti acquired a mountain of draft capital over several trades, but that was not enough. Turning those selections into talent is the key to building a contender from the ground up. Presti and his front office are one of the best in the NBA at evaluating prospects and finding difference-makers in the draft.

Williams spent three years at Santa Clara where he continued to improve, but most projected him to go in the mid-to-late first round in the 2022 NBA Draft. The 6’6 wing shot under 40 percent from the field as a sophomore and was 21 years old before being selected.

The Thunder were eager to take him 12th overall. He has been the best player in this class so far by win shares. In year two, Williams is averaging 19.3 points, 4.6 assists, 4.1 rebounds, and 1.0 steal in 32.0 minutes per game, while shooting 54.4 percent from the field and 44.7 percent on his 3-point tries. The 22-year-old looks like a star and has plenty of room to grow.

Sam Presti drafted an elite talent at 12th overall, and it missed his top five moves since taking over as Oklahoma City’s general manager in 2007. That speaks to his greatness. Thunder fans are ecstatic about J-Dub’s present and future. He will only get better from here.