HoopsHype Sam Presti rumors

October 28, 2012 Updates

Contract extension talks between the Thunder and Harden broke down, and Thunder general manger Sam Presti moved quickly to trade the guard. Harden rejected a four-year offer that would have paid him a base salary of $53 million to $54 million, league sources said. That offer would have pushed OKC's payroll to $95 million, and Thunder officials weren't willing to go any higher. Yahoo! Sports

October 17, 2012 Updates

In an innovative and historic hiring, the Oklahoma City Thunder have reached agreement with Serbian Darko Rajakovic to coach the franchise's Development League affiliate in Tulsa, sources told Yahoo! Sports. Rajakovic's hiring with the Tulsa 66ers is still pending his completion of the immigration process, sources said. Yahoo! Sports

Rajakovic, 33, is the first European to be hired as a head coach for an NBDL or NBA franchise. Thunder general manager Sam Presti has had a long relationship with Rajakovic, including a working partnership that began when Presti was an assistant GM with the San Antonio Spurs. Presti targeted Rajakovic for the Thunder's minor-league position out of a strong belief in Rajakovic's ability to develop the franchise's young players who'll spend time there, sources said. Yahoo! Sports

September 13, 2012 Updates
September 10, 2012 Updates
August 18, 2012 Updates
August 8, 2012 Updates
August 7, 2012 Updates

Dallas' Mark Cuban is one owner who has made his feelings known that NBA teams are simply subsidizing the Olympics without receiving any control or profit. Nonetheless, Presti had only good things to say on Saturday about the status quo. "I think it's really helpful for them to play under different circumstances; it only rounds them out as players and makes them better," said Presti, who also saw Durant and Westbrook win gold at the 2010 FIBA World Championship. "What we observed from the World Championship was just the mental endurance that it takes to go through an international competition and the training camp that leads up to it in medal-round play just to get there. "Just the level of mental endurance that Kevin and Russell have been exposed to and conditioned themselves to, I think has really helped us in our playoff series. That's a real benefit. I think Serge's experiences with the national team, again just being in different situations and adjusting to different styles of play, I only makes him a more well-rounded player. And James now is also getting that level of experience. I really feel like we've benefited from all of the exposures that the players have been given, and I think they're all very grateful for the opportunity too. It's fun to watch them in these situations." SI.com

July 13, 2012 Updates

"He's a guy that has quickness at his size and fits in with his length and versatility," said Thunder general manager Sam Presti. "And what we've seen at this point is someone who has been excellent in terms of coming in and showing that he is a willing and active learner." NBA.com

June 29, 2012 Updates
June 28, 2012 Updates

The Oklahoma City Thunder have added a fourth year to a contract extension offer to coach Scott Brooks, but the two sides still have significant differences on salary, league sources told Yahoo! Sports. Brooks’ contract expires on Saturday, and he could immediately become a candidate for the Portland Trail Blazers , sources said. Thunder GM Sam Presti and Brooks’ agent, Warren LeGarie, have had conversations this week, but there is still a gap between the sides. Yahoo! Sports

June 27, 2012 Updates

The chances of a playoff team getting Beal are slim, but Finals runner-up Oklahoma City has invested quality time figuring out a way to get up high enough to land Beal. Beal told ESPN/ESPN.com Wednesday that Oklahoma City general manager Sam Presti told him during an interview in Chicago that he was interested in trying to move up to draft him. The Thunder's first-round pick currently isn't until No. 28. "He told me he was going to decide what they're going to do and considered getting up there," said Beal. Beal said Denver, which picks at No. 20, also made a similar statement. ESPN.com

Presti has seriously considered finding a way to get to Beal. A number of sources said that Presti spent three days in Gainesville during the lockout watching the Gators practice, a fact that Beal confirmed Wednesday. A source also said that Florida coach Billy Donovan met with Presti in Dallas when he took his two nephews to the Oklahoma City-Dallas first-round playoff series in May. Presti and Donovan have had multiple conversations on the phone about Beal, as well. ESPN.com

June 24, 2012 Updates
June 23, 2012 Updates

Extending Harden is probably the first order of business and by the way he spoke Saturday, it doesn’t seem to be a concern. “I’m just leaving it up to my agent and Sam,” Harden said. “They’ll do a pretty good job of working it out. I’m focused on several other things right now. But when the time is [right], they’ll figure it out and it’ll be done.” DailyThunder.com

Oklahoma City Thunder coach Scott Brooks says he hopes to meet with team chairman Clay Bennett and general manager Sam Presti in "the next couple of days" to discuss a new contract. Brooks pointed out Saturday that no one has had down time since training camp started in early December, following the lockout that condensed the season. NBA.com

June 22, 2012 Updates

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