Sam Presti Rumors
Evans’ job with the Thunder is expected to be as an amateur evaluation scout. Thunder general manager Sam Presti’s move to bring on Evans comes at a time when the evaluation of high school prospects is at a premium, as a new pathway to professional basketball has been created through the NBA G League via high school.
Brandon Rahbar: My two big takeaways from Presti’s media call: 1. Without knowing when the season will start or what the salary cap looks like, Presti will wait before making any coach or roster decisions. 2. He likes Donovan. But with OKC’s future in the air, change was best for both sides.
Royce Young: Sam Presti speaking with reporters about Billy Donovan, says he’s “disappointed” it didn’t work out: “He did a great job for us … He’ll be regarded as someone that really helped the organization move forward.”
There were inquiries about logistics and the personnel layout, with Oklahoma City Thunder general manager Sam Presti wanting as much information about the anthem plan as possible so that every team could be organized with their approach and respectful of the players’ part in this exercise. “Don’t damage the platform,” as one person on the call put it.
Erik Horne: Sam Presti on Dennis Schroder having to leave Orlando for the birth of his second child: “We’re totally supportive of whatever Dennis wants to do. That’s not rhetoric. Family is the most important thing. We’ll find a way to do this for him. The team has been adaptable all year.”
Erik Horne: Sam Presti on Dennis Schroder for Sixth Man of the Year: “The thing that doesn’t get enough recognition is his willingness to accept the role itself. He’s a big reason the team is functioning at a high level. He’s playing the best basketball of his career.”
The Thunder have been in this position before. For the fourth time in their 12 seasons, the Thunder have lost an assistant general manager to another team. It’s a testament to the sharp minds general manager Sam Presti has surrounded himself with in Oklahoma City. This time is a little different. Troy Weaver was different, from his eye for talent (documented by The Athletic’s James Edwards III) to his truth-telling style, from his storytelling to his trash-talking.
Weaver — the Thunder’s vice president of basketball operations for the last seven seasons — bridged the gap between executive and player better than any high-ranking front-office member in the Thunder’s history. It’s why so many players who’ve come through Oklahoma City were overjoyed when Weaver was named the general manager of the Detroit Pistons on June 18. When Thunder guard Chris Paul picked up his phone and saw Weaver was hired in Detroit, he called and congratulated him. Even before Weaver was hired — when there were reports Weaver was in the running for the Detroit GM job — Paul called then, too.