Archive for the ‘ OKC Thunder Blog ’ Category

Thunder exercise option on Terrance Ferguson

The Oklahoma City Thunder exercised its third-year contract option on guard Terrance Ferguson.

Ferguson has appeared in 65 games (16 starts) with the Thunder, averaging 3.0 points and 0.8 rebounds in 12.9 minutes. The Tulsa native became the third player in NBA history to record 24 points and six three-pointers in his first career start on Jan. 3, 2018 at the Los Angeles Lakers.

Ferguson was originally selected 21st overall by the Thunder in the 2017 NBA Draft.

Thunder waive Abdul Gaddy, Scotty Hopson, Donte Grantham and Dez Wells

The Oklahoma City Thunder have waived guards Abdul Gaddy and Scotty Hopson, and forwards Donte Grantham, and Dez Wells.

Gaddy saw action in four preseason games and averaged 1.0 point, 1.8 assists and 1.3 rebounds in 6.6 minutes per game.

Grantham, Hopson and Wells were originally signed by the Thunder on October 10.

Thunder sign K.J. McDaniels, Bryce Alford, Richard Solomon and Abdul Gaddy

The Oklahoma City Thunder have signed guards Bryce Alford, Abdul Gaddy, forward K.J. McDaniels and center Richard Solomon.

The signings are likely non-guaranteed deals that merely bring the players to Thunder training camp.

Alford (6-3, 185) spent the 2017-18 season with the Oklahoma City Blue of the NBA G League where he made a league-leading 186 three-pointers on the year, good for the second-most in NBAGL history. In his time with the Blue, the UCLA product appeared in 50 games (27 starts) and averaged 15.5 points, 2.8 rebounds and 2.0 assists in 30.9 minutes per game, shooting 40.7 percent from beyond the arc.

Gaddy (6-3, 185) spent last season playing in Germany with s.Oliver Baskets where he appeared in 36 games (12 starts) and averaged 8.1 points, 4.6 assists, 2.5 rebounds and 0.92 steals in 25.0 minutes, shooting 48.1 percent from the floor. The Washington native also played three seasons in Latvia and Italy after spending the 2013-14 campaign with the Maine Red Claws of the NBAGL. In 46 games (32 starts) with Maine, he posted averages of 9.0 points, 5.0 assists and 3.2 rebounds in 27.2 minutes while shooting 48.9 percent from the field and 42.0 percent from long range.

McDaniels (6-6, 205) is a four-year NBA veteran, having spent time in Brooklyn, Houston and Philadelphia. In that time, he averaged 5.3 points and 2.2 rebounds in 14.1 minutes and saw action in four playoff contests with Houston in 2016. The Clemson product most recently played for the Grand Rapids Drive of the NBAGL during the 2017-18 season, appearing in 31 games and averaging 16.2 points, 7.0 rebounds, 1.19 steals and 1.32 blocks in 27.4 minutes while shooting 48.7 percent from the field.

Solomon (6-11, 235) played with Usak Sportif in Turkey for the 2017-18 campaign, where in 19 games (three starts), he averaged 9.6 points and 4.8 rebounds in 18.4 minutes while shooting 58.7 percent from the floor. Additionally, the California native spent time in France and Japan following a one-year stint with the Oklahoma City Blue in 2014-15. He appeared in 28 games (one start) with the Blue, posting averages of 8.5 points on 61.8 percent shooting and 6.9 rebounds in 17.9 minutes per contest.

Thunder hire Chris Fisher as TV play-by-play announcer

The Oklahoma City Thunder have hired Chris Fisher as their new TV play-by-play announcer. He will join Michael Cage, Lesley McCaslin, Nick Gallo, Antonio Daniels and John Rhadigan for the Thunder’s 70 game broadcasts on FOX Sports Oklahoma during the 2018-19 season.

A graduate of the University of Southern California, Fisher comes to Oklahoma City from Los Angeles where he has been the radio voice for USC basketball for eight years as well as host for Trojan football broadcasts. Fisher’s television work includes basketball play-by-play for FOX Sports, the PAC 12 Network and Time Warner Cable. During his career, Fisher also worked in broadcasting for minor league baseball teams in Oregon and Virginia.

“Chris is an exciting addition to the Thunder family and our broadcast team. He is considered a rising star in sports broadcasting and we are thrilled to welcome him,” said Dan Mahoney, Thunder VP of Broadcasting. “Besides being an experienced, talented broadcaster with a passion for basketball, Chris is a first-rate person. We believe that on and off the air he will be an excellent representative of our team, our community and our partners at FOX Sports Oklahoma.”

“The incredible relationship between the Thunder and its fans is well recognized in professional sports. I am thankful the organization has put its faith in me and I look forward to continuing to promote this amazing partnership,” Fisher said.

Fisher’s initial broadcast on FOX Sports Oklahoma will be Sunday, Oct. 7 as the Thunder hosts the Atlanta Hawks in a 2 p.m. preseason game at the BOK Center in Tulsa. He will join the rest of the broadcast crew for the three other preseason games which will be streamed live via the Thunder Mobile App. Fisher will also appear during the Thunder’s live Media Day show, beginning at 12:30 today streaming on the Thunder App.

The Thunder’s 2018-19 broadcast schedule includes 70 games on FOX Sports Oklahoma and 12 national exclusives on ABC or TNT. All games are broadcast on radio with Matt Pinto on WWLS 98.1 FM The Sports Animal and the full statewide Thunder Radio Network.

Today, Monday, features lots of NBA team media days around the league. Tons of news will come out, especially on which players gained or lost weight, bulked up, plus rotational news, etc. But there are also specific roles that various organizations must still fill, often in the broadcast department. Here’s the Oklahoman with some Thunder news:

On Thunder Media Day, the team fittingly unveiled its next television voice.

The Thunder has hired Chris Fisher as its new television play-by-play announcer. Fisher will be the lead voice for the Thunder’s 70 game broadcasts on Fox Sports Oklahoma during the 2018-19 season.

Fisher spent the last eight seasons as the play-by-play announcer for University of Southern California men’s basketball, as well as the halftime and postgame show host for USC football. The Los Angeles native’s play-by-play career spans more than a decade, with experience in Pac-12 sports as well as minor league baseball.

Full article

Russell Westbrook’s wife is expecting, and the baby will be… two babies. Twin daughters! Here’s the Oklahoman with more:

In a Thunder-produced video posted Tuesday on YouTube entitled “The Westbrook Family,” Russell Westbrook and his wife, Nina Westbrook, are talking about their home life with 1-year-old son Noah, when they drop a surprise about Nina’s pregnancy.

The Westbrooks are expecting twin girls.

“If Noah gets out of hand, they’ll be able to both jump on him at the same time,” Nina said.

Full article

Russell Westbrook undergoes knee surgery

Oklahoma City Thunder guard Russell Westbrook has undergone arthroscopic procedure on his right knee.

The Thunder, Westbrook and his representation determined that after he experienced inflammation in his knee this past weekend that the best course of action was the proactive procedure, performed by Dr. Neal ElAttrache with Thunder medical personnel present at the Kerlan-Jobe Orthopaedic Clinic in Los Angeles.

According to the Oklahoman, “Westbrook felt stiffness and experienced inflammation in his knee last weekend, and elected to have surgery as opposed to missing time deep into the season. The surgery, which the Thunder is calling a “proactive procedure,” was performed by Dr. Neal ElAttrache with Thunder medical personnel present at the Kerlan-Jobe Orthopaedic Clinic in Los Angeles.”

The seven-time All-Star averaged a triple-double for a second straight season during the 2017-18 campaign, with 25.4 points, a league-leading 10.3 assists and 10.1 rebounds, making him the first player in NBA history to average a triple-double in multiple seasons.

More from the Oklahoman: “The surgery will inevitably raise questions about Westbrook’s durability going forward. He’s entering his 11th season, the first year of a five-year, $205 million contract extension he signed in 2017. Westbrook turns 30 on Nov. 12.”

Westbrook will be re-evaluated in approximately four weeks, at which time a further update will be provided.

Thunder waive Kyle Singler

Thunder waive Kyle Singler

The Oklahoma City Thunder waived forward Kyle Singler today.

Singler appeared in 138 games (22 starts) over four years with the Thunder, recording averages of 3.2 points and 1.8 rebounds in 13.6 minutes per contest.

Entering the 2018-19 NBA season, the Thunder are still built around Russell Westbrook, Paul George and Steven Adams. George could have left in free agency this summer but chose to re-sign for big money. Carmelo Anthony is gone. Defensive-minded Andre Roberson returns from injury in the backcourt. And Dennis Schroder is on board, definitely making the bench better.

Singler wasn’t going to receive many minutes. He could latch onto another NBA roster, at least for training camp.

Thunder add Bob Beyer to coaching staff

Thunder add Bob Beyer to coaching staff

The Oklahoma City Thunder last night (Monday) added Bob Beyer to their coaching staff.

Beyer joins Billy Donovan’s staff after spending the past four seasons with the Detroit Pistons, most recently serving as associate head coach for the last two seasons.

Beyer’s coaching career spans more than 30 years at both the NBA and collegiate level. His NBA coaching experience dates back to the 2003-04 season where he first served as an assistant coach with the Toronto Raptors. Beyer later spent 2007-12 on Stan Van Gundy’s Orlando Magic staff, where he helped lead the team to a 259-135 (.657) record and five straight postseason appearances, including a spot in the 2009 NBA Finals.

Prior to joining the NBA ranks, Beyer’s collegiate experience was highlighted by a stint at Texas Tech University under Bob Knight from 2001-03 and as head coach at Siena from 1994-97.

Beyer graduated from Alfred University in 1983 with a bachelor’s degree in history and minors in coaching, writing and secondary education. He earned his master’s degree in curriculum planning and development while later coaching at Albany.

Thunder sign Tyler Davis to two-way contract

The Oklahoma City Thunder yesterday signed center Tyler Davis to a Two-Way Contract.

In three seasons at Texas A&M, Davis (6-10, 266) appeared in 102 games (100 starts) and averaged 13.4 points, 7.4 rebounds and 1.1 assists in 26.0 minutes. At the end of the 2017-18 season, Davis was named to the All-SEC First Team after leading the conference in field goal shooting (58.5 percent) for a third consecutive season.

Davis led the Aggies in scoring this past season (14.9 points per game) as he helped lead Texas A&M to the Sweet 16 for a second time in three seasons. He is one of five players in school history to amass 1,000-plus points, 500-plus rebounds and 100-plus blocks. Davis was formerly named Mr. Basketball in the state of Texas following his senior season at Plano West High School.

Each team is allowed to have two players signed to Two-Way Contracts. This is in addition to the standard league maximum of up to 15 players on the roster. Players on Two-Way Contracts spend most of the season in the NBA G League, but can be called up to their NBA team for a maximum of 45 days.

Thunder sign rookie Hamidou Diallo

The Oklahoma City Thunder signed guard Hamidou Diallo today.

Diallo (6-5, 198) was acquired by the Thunder earlier this month. Originally selected on June 22 by the Brooklyn Nets with the 45th overall pick in the 2018 NBA draft, the Kentucky product started all 37 games as a redshirt freshman and averaged 10.0 points, 3.6 rebounds and 1.2 assists in 24.8 minutes per game and scored in double figures in 16 games.

A native of Queens, N.Y., Diallo represented the U.S. in the 2017 FIBA U19 World Cup where in seven games he averaged 10.9 points, 3.9 rebounds and 2.3 assists in 18.2 minutes per contest. He also won gold at the 2016 FIBA Americas U18 Championship.

The Atlanta Hawks on Wednesday acquired Carmelo Anthony and a protected 2022 first-round draft pick from the Oklahoma City Thunder along with Justin Anderson from the Philadelphia 76ers in a three-team transaction, with Mike Muscala going to Philadelphia and Dennis Schröder going to Oklahoma City. As part of the trade, Timothe Luwawu-Cabarrot goes from Philadelphia to Oklahoma City.

The Hawks are expected to waive Melo, who reportedly may sign with the Rockets once he clears waivers.

“We want to welcome Dennis and Timothé to Oklahoma City and the Thunder,” said Thunder Executive Vice President and General Manager Sam Presti. “Both of these players represent the continued transition of our style of play. Dennis provides us with another proven playmaker and someone that will only enhance the overall speed of our team. Timothé adds another young, long, versatile wing that can play multiple positions and complement our returning core. We are excited about the added depth and stylistic fit that both players provide as we enter our 11th season of Thunder Basketball.”

“On behalf of the Hawks organization, I’d like to thank Mike and Dennis for their contributions to our team over the last five years,” said Hawks General Manager and Head of Basketball Operations Travis Schlenk. “Both players worked extremely hard to develop and improve throughout their careers in Atlanta and each had a special connection with our fans. We wish them all the best moving forward.”

“Mike Muscala joins our program at a fantastic stage of his career. He has enjoyed some NBA success and his upside in the future is extremely bright,” 76ers Head Coach Brett Brown said. “We will use him both as a backup five and, at times, a power forward. His ability to shoot the ball and the energy with which he plays will help our basketball team.”

Schröder (6-1, 172) has appeared in 352 career games (161 starts) and averaged 12.9 points, 4.8 assists and 2.5 rebounds in 23.7 minutes per contest with Atlanta. Last season, the Braunschweig, Germany native appeared in 67 games (all starts), averaging a career-high 19.4 points, 6.2 assists, 3.1 rebounds and a career-best 1.07 steals in 31.0 minutes per game, making him just the fourth player in Hawks history to average at least 19 points and six assists over the course of a season.

Originally selected 17th overall by Atlanta in the 2013 NBA Draft, Schröder has increased his scoring average in each of his five NBA seasons since entering the league.

Luwawu-Cabarrot (6-6, 205) joins the Thunder after spending the 2017-18 season with Philadelphia where he appeared in 52 games (seven starts) and averaged 5.8 points, 1.4 rebounds and 1.0 assist in 15.5 minutes per game.

Selected 24th overall in the first round of the 2016 NBA Draft by the 76ers, the French native has appeared in 121 career games (26 starts) and holds career averages of 6.1 points, 1.8 rebounds and 1.1 assists in 16.5 minutes per game.

“I want to take this opportunity to thank Carmelo Anthony and acknowledge his professionalism and contributions during his time with the Thunder,” said Presti. “Although his tenure was only one year, the fact that Melo is a part of our history is important to us. We appreciate Carmelo and his agent Leon Rose for their collaboration and communication as we worked to resolve the situation in a fashion that was suitable to everyone. We wish Melo and his family nothing but the best in the future.”

In one season with Oklahoma City, Anthony averaged 16.2 points, 5.8 rebounds and 1.3 assists in 32.1 minutes per game. A 10-time All-Star, he scored his 25,000th career point on Jan. 27 at the Detroit Pistons, making him the 21st player in NBA history to achieve the feat. Anthony is a three-time Olympic gold medalist and the United States Olympic Men’s National Team’s all-time leading scorer.

The Boston Celtics have traded forward Abdel Nader and cash considerations to the Oklahoma City Thunder in exchange for guard Rodney Purvis.

Nader (6-6, 220) appeared in 48 games (one start) for Boston and averaged 3.0 points and 1.5 rebounds in 10.9 minutes per game. Drafted 58th overall by the Celtics in the 2016 NBA draft, the Iowa State product was named the 2016-17 NBA G League Rookie of the Year, after playing in 40 games (all starts) with the Maine Red Claws and averaging 21.3 points, 6.2 rebounds and 3.9 assists in 33.5 minutes per game.

Purvis, acquired last week by Oklahoma City, played in 16 games (two starts) last season with the Orlando Magic and averaged 6.0 points, 1.7 rebounds and 1.1 assists in 18.1 minutes per game.

The Oklahoma City Thunder has acquired guard Rodney Purvis from the Orlando Magic in exchange for center Dakari Johnson and cash considerations, it was announced today by Executive Vice President and General Manager Sam Presti.

Purvis (6-4, 205) played in 16 games (two starts) last season and averaged 6.0 points, 1.7 rebounds and 1.1 assists in 18.1 minutes per game.

Johnson, originally selected by Oklahoma City with the 48th overall pick in the 2015 NBA Draft, appeared in 31 games (six starts) during the 2017-18 campaign, averaging 1.8 points and 1.1 rebounds in 5.2 minutes per contest.

Thunder re-sign Raymond Felton

The Thunder re-signed guard Raymond Felton today.

Felton plays a supporting cast role on the Thunder, behind star point guard Russell Westbrook.

Per multiple reports, the deal is a one-year, $2.4 million contract.

Felton has appeared in 938 career games (659 starts), recording averages of 11.4 points, 5.4 assists, 3.0 rebounds and 1.21 steals in 30.3 minutes with Charlotte, New York, Denver, Portland, Dallas, the LA Clippers and most recently Oklahoma City. The 13-year NBA veteran ranks eighth among all active players with 5,044 assists and is one of 12 players in NBA history with at least 5,000 assists, 900 three-pointers and 200 blocks.

The Marion, S.C. native appeared in all 82 games (two starts) last season with the Thunder, and averaged 6.9 points, 2.5 assists and 1.9 rebounds in 16.6 minutes per contest.

Felton was selected fifth overall by Charlotte in the 2005 NBA Draft and was later named to the All-Rookie Second Team. Prior to entering the draft, he spent three years at North Carolina where he led the Tar Heels to the 2005 NCAA National Championship, was selected to the All-NCAA Tournament Team and received The Bob Cousy Award.

Thunder re-sign Jerami Grant

The Thunder yesterday re-signed forward Jerami Grant to a multi-year contract.

According to the Norman Transcript, “Grant had reportedly agreed to a three-year, $27 million deal earlier in the week and the Thunder have not disputed that reporting.”

Grant appeared in 81 games (one start) for Oklahoma City during the 2017-18 season and averaged 8.4 points on a career-high 53.5 percent (244-456) shooting, 3.9 rebounds and 0.95 blocks in 20.3 minutes per game.

“We are thrilled to have Jerami continue his development and career with the Thunder,” said Presti. “Jerami’s versatility and overall speed are an important aspect to our effort to evolve and build on our style of play going forward. We believe Jerami’s best basketball is in front of him.”

Grant scored his 1,000th point in a Thunder uniform this past season on March 18 at Toronto, making him the fourth player in Oklahoma City history with 1,000 points and 100 blocks in his first 150 games.

Originally selected 39th overall by the Philadelphia 76ers in the 2014 NBA Draft, the Maryland native holds career averages of 7.5 points, 3.6 rebounds and 1.0 assist in 21.9 minutes per contest.

Thunder re-sign Paul George

The Thunder on Friday re-signed forward Paul George to a multi-year contract.

“Paul’s commitment to Oklahoma City is a moment that Thunder fans will long remember and greatly value in our franchise’s history,” said Thunder Chairman Clayton I. Bennett. “We deeply appreciate his dedication, genuine sincerity and drive to contribute to the Thunder and our community. We are so happy he and his family will remain a part of the Thunder organization and I couldn’t be more excited about the future of Thunder basketball.”

The five-time NBA All-Star averaged 21.9 points, 5.7 rebounds, 3.3 assists and 2.04 steals (second in NBA) during the 2017-18 season. George also averaged 4.0 deflections per game and recovered 2.7 loose balls per game, which ranked tied for third and fourth in the league, respectively. George holds a 101.59 career defensive rating which ranks fourth among all active players.

“Paul George exemplifies the traits on and off the floor that the Thunder values to the highest degree, and we are thrilled that he will continue on with our organization,” said Presti. “Paul, his family and his representation were open and collaborative throughout the season and into his free agency. It is this approach that allowed for a great partnership to be built through all reaches of the organization and community. We look forward to building our future and creating our path forward with Paul.”

George became one of five players in the past 30 years to average 20+ points on better than 40 percent three-point shooting to go along with 2+ steals this past season (Larry Bird, Michael Jordan, Hersey Hawkins and Stephen Curry). George also made a career-best 244 three-point field goals, second-most in the league this past season.

Originally selected with the 10th overall pick in the 2010 NBA Draft, the Palmdale, Calif. native was named to the 2017-18 All-NBA Third Team, which represented the fourth career All-NBA selection for George.

During the 2016 U.S. Olympics in Rio De Janeiro, George won a gold medal playing for the US National Team where he appeared in all eight games (two starts) and averaged 11.3 points (fourth on the team), 4.5 rebounds, 1.9 assists and 1.50 steals as the United States went a perfect 8-0 during Olympic competition.

The Thunder yesterday signed guard Deonte Burton to a Two-Way Contract.

Burton (6-5, 250) spent the 2017-18 season with Wonju Dongbu Promy of South Korea’s KBL, where he appeared in 63 games (all starts) and averaged 23.8 points, 8.8 rebounds, 3.8 assists, 1.65 steals and 1.03 blocks in 31.1 minutes per contest while shooting 47.1 percent (549-1166) from the field.

The Milwaukee native spent two years at Marquette before transferring to Iowa State where he was named Big 12 Newcomer of the Year for the 2015-16 campaign and was selected to the All-Big 12 Second Team the following season. In his two years as a Cyclone, Burton appeared in 61 games (42 starts) and averaged 12.8 points, 5.2 rebounds, 1.5 assists, 1.38 steals and 1.06 blocks in 25.0 minutes per game.

Per NBA rules, each team is allowed two players on Two-Way Contracts in addition to the standard 15 players on the roster. Players on Two-Way Contracts spend most of the season in the NBA G League, but can be called up to their NBA team for a maximum of 45 days.

Thunder sign Nerlens Noel

Nerlens Noel is still trying to establish himself in the NBA and live up to his potential. The The Oklahoma City Thunder are giving him a chance to do this, and signed the forward/center today.

According to the Oklahoman, “it’s a two-year deal — the second year is a player option — expected to be at the veteran minimum, which would pay Noel about $1.7 million next season. It’s a surprisingly low price for a 6-foot-11 former lottery pick who last season turned down a reported four-year, $70 million deal with the Mavericks, and that makes the appeal obvious.”

Noel (6-11, 220) has appeared in 223 career games (158 starts), averaging 9.3 points, 7.2 rebounds, 1.4 assists, 1.56 steals and 1.41 blocks in 26.0 minutes per game while shooting 51.2 percent (847-1654) from the field with Philadelphia and Dallas. The Malden, Mass. native is one of two players in the league to average 1.5+ steals and 1.4+ blocks over the last four seasons (DeMarcus Cousins).

“We are excited to bring Nerlens to the Thunder,” said Presti. “In addition to being a multi-faceted defender‎, he moves the ball at a high level for a player at his position, which complements our existing core.”

The Kentucky product was originally selected sixth overall by New Orleans in the 2013 NBA Draft and was later named to the All-Rookie First Team.

In one year as a Wildcat, the 2013 SEC Rookie of the Year and Defensive Player of the Year started in all 24 games he appeared in and averaged 10.5 points, 9.5 rebounds, 1.6 assists, 4.42 blocks and 2.08 steals in 31.9 minutes per contest. Noel led the conference in total blocks with 106 on the season en route to being named to the All-SEC First Team.

The Charlotte Hornets today acquired a 2019 second-round draft pick and cash considerations from the Oklahoma City Thunder in exchange for the draft rights to Hamidou Diallo, the 45th overall pick in the 2018 NBA Draft.

The Hornets acquired Diallo’s rights, along with center Timofey Mozgov, a 2021 second-round draft pick and cash considerations, from the Brooklyn Nets earlier today in exchange for Dwight Howard.

Diallo (6-5, 198), was originally selected by the Brooklyn Nets with the 45th overall pick in the 2018 NBA Draft. The Kentucky product started all 37 games as a redshirt freshman and averaged 10.0 points, 3.6 rebounds and 1.2 assists in 24.8 minutes per game and scored in double figures in 16 games.

A native of Queens, N.Y., Diallo represented the U.S. in the 2017 FIBA U19 World Cup and 2016 FIBA Americas U18 Championship.

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