Although Sam Presti held his season opening presser on Friday, the Carmelo Anthony trade afforded the GM a reason to talk more on Media Day.’
Sam Presti opened his presser with a solid quote. “Ideas only become opportunities when you have a solid ownership group to work with“. He calls the ownership group incredibly humble with no egos in the group. He further says they are passionate about the basketball, the Thunder, Oklahoma City and their community.
Further, he said the ownership group balances that with an incredible amount of respect for the players. They respect their craftsmanship and their space. The ownership group cares about the players as individuals and their families. As such, they create a great environment for the players to work in. Knowing the things the players need to be successful, they allow them to function without distraction. Presti says that requires a lot of humility.
This latter statement was mirrored in the sentiments Paul George cited yesterday saying he’s been kept in the loop with every single move the franchise has made. George’s comments seemed to indicate that isn’t the norm or at least it implies that wasn’t the situation in Indiana.
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Thoughts on Carmelo Anthony trade:
Presti reveled in the prowess of Anthony’s offense. The GM said the best word to describe Anthony is dynamic. Melo’s ability to stretch the floor and his passing were two keys the GM centered on. Moreover, he cited his ability to stretch the floor whether as corner threes or via uncontested shots. In each situation Presti notes Anthony shot over 40 percent. Additionally, the GM noted head coach Billy Donovan is excited to utilize some under used (and under respected) aspects of Carmelo Anthony’s game. Things like his passing and his vision. Furthermore, Presti noted Melo will be the recipient of many wide open looks with the talent on this squad.
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Sam Presti elaborated saying he believes Billy Donovan will create play sets that take advantage of Melo’s offensive prowess. The GM also expects Donovan will utilize Anthony’s top passing skills and ability to get to the line.
In terms of his overall opinion of the newest addition to the Thunder, Presti says he has long respected Carmelo Anthony. Presti says league wide whether it be other GMs, owners, referees or teammates, Melo has earned a respect for how he functions both on and off the court. Sam Presti served up high praise calling Anthony dignified. “The fact Anthony handled the situation in New York with professionalism, class and dignity added to the excitement about bringing him to OKC.”
“The fact Carmelo Anthony handled the situation in New York with professionalism, class and dignity added to the excitement about bringing him to OKC.”
Presti says the opportunity to bring Anthony to OKC was a unique opportunity. This because of the limited short list of teams. Anthony gave to the Knicks (Rockets, Cavaliers, Thunder).
The GM admires Melo’s professionalism. Again, he noted the dignified way he conducts his business.
Asked if it was much of a risk to add Anthony, Presti response was simple and direct.
“I don’t see it as much of a risk with the team we have in place.”
Elaborating on this, the GM said he never saw the move as a risk because of the team we have in place and the way he compliments the Thunder.
Potential to add Dwyane Wade?
After all the offseason moves there remained another big question for Sam Presti. With Chicago’s buy0ut of Dwyane Wade, was he on Prest’s radar? Presti responded in his typical non-committal way.
“I’ll go through the process and we’ll be in touch with those people like the rest of the league.” Presti
The Big OKC Three:
Sam Presti said although the trio have never played with each other on same team, they do have experience playing on the same floor. Therefore he doesn’t expect a huge learning curve. He said the most important thing they’ll need to accomplish in camp in establishing an identity.
Stay tuned for more podium visits. These will include the new Big 3 as well as new and returning players.