Active at Trade Deadline?

Report suggests Sam Presti is looking to deal

USA TODAY

It’s that time of year again, folks. The NBA trade deadline is rapidly approaching, and rumor has it GM Sam Presti is working the phones. Does it get much better than this?

According to a report from Alex Kennedy of Basketball Insiders, Oklahoma City is expected to be active ahead of February 23’s deadline. What’s yet to be determined, however, is if the Thunder will be looking to buy or sell.

Via Kennedy:

“In talks with other teams, they [Thunder] have sent mixed signals. Rival executives aren’t sure if they want to be buyers to make a playoff run (they’re the West’s seventh seed), or if they want to move off some of their players to focus more on the team’s long-term outlook.
Either way, the Thunder are working the phones and one general manager said, ‘“They will do something, one way or the other. They won’t stand pat.”’

It comes as no surprise to learn Sam Presti is looking for deals, as OKC has made waves at the deadline more than once in recent years. What’s interesting is the lingering question of whether he will be looking to strengthen this year’s squad, or to sell off pieces in preparation for the future. We all know of his affinity for playing the long game.

Regardless of whether the Thunder are buyers or sellers in the next eight days, an eye must be kept on the immediate future. With Russell Westbrook scheduled for another big decision this summer, one would assume he’s looking for assurance that Presti is building a contender around him as quickly as possible. At age 28, Westbrook simply doesn’t have the time for a complete rebuild, nor should he be asked to make the time.

Buckle up, Thunder fans. It’s time to get wild. Anyone not named Russell Westbrook should be available if the price is right, and who knows what Sammy P has up his sleeve this time around. As the report suggests, “They will do something, one way or the other. They won’t stand pat.”