Sam Presti Rumors
As good as Oladipo was in his first season in Oklahoma City, there’s room for improvement and expanded responsibility. Both will be needed as the 24-year-old goes from a promising two-way player on a rookie-scale contract to a must-have contributor making $21 million in the first year of an $84 million contract. “He’s improved every single year he’s been in the league, and I would expect him to continue to do that,” Thunder general manager Sam Presti said. “I really don’t have a concern that they will continue to, but there’s no question, Victor, Steven (Adams), those guys have to get better for us to continue to get where we want to go, and I think they are going to work to get to that point.
The expectation is that the Thunder will meet with Westbrook at the start of free agency and offer him that five-year extension. If he takes it, he’ll solidify himself as the face of the franchise, and the hub around which Presti will try to reconstruct a championship contender. But if Westbrook isn’t willing to commit, it would almost certainly set off a frenzied bidding war for Westbrook’s services — and, in doing so, give Presti the chance he didn’t have with Durant: to get something in return for a departing star.
Andre Roberson last week expressed his interest in returning to Oklahoma City, and on Monday, Thunder general manager Sam Presti said he’s “excited about the fact that (Roberson) is a part of the team.”
“Every indication we’ve had from Dre and from his people, his agent, is that he loves playing here,” Presti said. “And I’ve always said this to everybody before: When the player shows an interest in being here, it really exponentially helps your opportunity to get a contract done, if you would like to.”
With another summer of uncertainty on the horizon, Thunder general manager Sam Presti is “hopeful” the franchise can sign Russell Westbrook to a new long-term extension.
“The rules are that you can’t have that conversation until July 1, and you know, when that time comes, we’ll sit down, we’ll have conversations with him about what that opportunity presents,” Presti said Monday at his end of season availability. “And you know, we’re obviously hopeful that he remains really excited about being a part of this organization for the remainder of his career.”