The OKC Thunder begin year two of their full-on rebuild, after a top ten draft pick, plus three additional picks in the 2021 NBA Draft, where does the current roster stand? Who can become a star? How would you prioritize each player?
We understand that the NBA is a star-driven league. Sure, every player on a roster is important, and they all get rings at the end of a championship run even if they only logged a single minute, but to get to that mountain top can only be accomplished with stars.
Have the OKC Thunder found their next star?
The NBA players are set up in a best of seven series, so surviving and advance as the little engine that could is more difficult in the association than any other professional sports league. Without the single-elimination factor from football, the randomness that embeds itself in Hockey and Baseball, basketball is the sport that almost every year feels as though they crowned the true champion.
It is why upsets are so rare and memorable, like when the “We Believe Warriors” shock the Mavericks in the first round of the postseason just days after Dirk was crowned the league’s most valuable player.
While Nick Collison has his jersey retired, and Kenrich Williams was a big part of keeping last year’s team together during a pandemic, the scoreboard is defined by stars. Unlike other sports, one player or two can truly will you to your final destination. While it is a team sport, it is individualized.
The Oklahoma City Thunder realize they have a budding star on their hand in Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, who they just gave a max contract to prove it, but no matter how good the fresh prince of the prairie ends up being, he can not do it alone.
Sam Presti and the Thunder will continue to hunt down their next building block to put next to SGA, when they do that, the timeline for winning a championship truly begins. The question is, does the team already have that number two options on its roster?