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Forecast: You will be Thundering up

Posted by: Greater Oklahoma City Chamber on Tuesday, September 22, 2015 at 12:00:00 am
Kids cheering at the Thunder game

So, last year, eh? Remember that? Racked with injuries the Thunder fought tough to the bitter end and missed the playoffs by just one game. No one personified the fight of the team more than our man Russell Westbrook. Russ averaged 28.1 points, 8.6 assists, and 2.1 steals en route to winning the NBA scoring title, powering his way through an orbital fracture with his trademark toughness and competitive fire.

This year, however? Well, it’s a new year, baby. The team looks to be fully healthy and loaded to roll for the first time in what feels like a long time, while the overall talent level seems improved, top to bottom. The addition of scoring center Enes Kanter at the end of last season provided an instant spark on the offensive end and the team added former-4th overall pick Dion Waiters via trade mid-season, in addition to moves to obtain D.J. Augustin, Kyle Singler and Steve Novak. The questions in years past largely centered around where scoring outside of KD, Russ and Ibaka might come from. This year, the question is more of how the team will ultimately divide up shots, as overall scoring prowess has undoubtedly improved. How will all the new players mesh with a fully healthy Durant? Will defense take a hit with more Kanter and zero Perkins down low? How will new coach Billy Donovan’s “spread pick-and-roll” offensive system lend itself to NBA talent and competition? We’ll soon find out, as preseason games begin Oct. 7 in Minneapolis, while the regular season tips off Oct. 28 in Chesapeake Energy Arena vs. those pesky, ageless and heavily-accented San Antonio Spurs. We can’t wait!

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