It seems the Thunder have found their rebound after a bad break up with Kevin Durant. The arrival of Paul George and the trade for Carmelo Anthony are proof that OKC has no intention on simply rebuilding post-Durant. The team is loaded with some impressive firepower. There is just one question: is it enough?
2016-17 Record: 47-35 (6th seed in West, lost in 1st round to HOU)
Players Added: Paul George (via Trade w/ IND), Carmelo Anthony (via Trade w/ NYK)
Players Lost: Victor Oladipo (via Trade w/ IND), Taj Gibson (via FA)
What To Watch For: Star Power A Plenty
Despite a few big names on the move this off-season, the two biggest may just be Paul George and Carmelo Anthony joining up with Russell Westbrook to form a team worthy of challenging the Warriors for their throne. There is well documented history of teams amassing major stars to create a “dream team”, with a mixed bag of results. Given the contract structures of these players, the Thunder will have 82+ games to prove they’re the real deal.
Best Case Scenario: The Perfect Storm
Despite all the excitement coming into this season, this team could easily be a one-and-done situation. Carmelo feels like a big fish in a small pond in OKC, and Paul George seems to be more than willing to see his options in free agency. If this team is going to be a sustained success, this team needs to come together in a hurry. If they can find the right chemistry early in the season, the Finals are a definite possibility and that may be enough to keep all of this star power right in OKC.
2017-18 Prediction: Top 3 Seed, potential NBA Champions