Carmelo Anthony to the Oklahoma City Thunder Should Scare The Western Conference

Carmelo Anthony will be the starting power forward for the Oklahoma City Thunder next season. That’s a move that should make every team in the Western Conference have a serious cause for concern.

In a deal between the New York Knicks and Oklahoma City Thunder, Carmelo Anthony is joining forces with superstars Paul George and Russell Westbrook. On paper, the trio will form one of the most potent offensive units in the league.

Carmelo Anthony is ultimately the one who made the deal possible. He waived his no-trade clause to include other options outside of the Houston Rockets in order to find a new home before this week’s training camp began. Once he informed the New York Knicks of his expanded list, the rest was on the Knicks organization. They finally found a home for the 33-year-old while continuing to improve their roster.

The Oklahoma City Thunder were seeking ways to stay in the NBA Championship race sans Kevin Durant. Adding a player of Anthony’s caliber is one way that the team was successful in remaining competitive. Anthony gives the Thunder a very strong second and third scoring option. He is a weapon the team will need when facing high-powered offenses featured by teams such as the Golden State Warriors and Houston Rockets.

The challenges that lie ahead for the Oklahoma City Thunder will be on the defensive end. Anthony has never been known for his defense nor has he shown commitment on that end of the floor. This season it’s sure to be a point of emphasis. Paul George has already hinted that he expects the Thunder to remain near the top of the league in defense this season.

Media Day Chatter

In an interview during media day with NBA TV Analyst Dennis Scott, Anthony admitted that he has adjusted to situations before and he is willing to do the same with the Thunder. Anthony also admitted that the trio would not hinder the others success on the court. Whoever has a better scoring night would receive the support of the others. Simply stated, the trio would remain selfless for each other.

The selflessness that Carmelo Anthony speaks about is the reason they could win the West and It’s also why the rest of the conference, including the Golden State Warriors, should be concerned.

Last season, all three players ranked in the top 25 of the league averaging over 22 points a game with Westbrook leading the league at 31.6 per game. George averaged 23.6 points per game and Anthony was at 22.4.

This off-season, the NBA saw a combination of 66 all-star game appearances change teams, including Anthony. Chemistry amongst all of those teams with players involved will be paramount for success this season.

Should Paul George Consider Staying with the Oklahoma City Thunder Next Year? 

The Oklahoma City Thunder are set to challenge for the top spot in the improved Western Conference.

And adding a player of Carmel Anthony’s caliber is sure to help them along the way.

 

 

 

Should Paul George Consider Staying with the Oklahoma City Thunder Next Year? 

Rumors have surfaced indicating the Indiana Pacers were considering trading Paul George to various teams not in Oklahoma. George has indicated his desire to play for the Los Angeles Lakers, but could he have a change of heart in Oklahoma City?

In a twist of speculation, Paul George was traded to the Oklahoma City Thunder for Damontas Sabonis and Victor Oladipo.

Many believed George would be a one year rental for the Thunder and bolt to the Los Angeles Lakers next year. It seems now George could be having a change of heart.

He recently indicated he felt the Pacers championship window had closed and that he would be foolish to leave the Thunder if they had a successful year. An encouraging sign for the Thunder is that they have the reigning league MVP coming off a historic season.

But will a Russell Westbrook and Paul George pairing be enough to win championships in the western conference?

Odds say no.

Las Vegas odds have the Thunder with the seventh best chances at 40/1 to win a championship next season.

Taking a look at the western conference on paper, it seems like a difficult task. Currently, the Golden State Warriors look even better than last year with the addition of Omri Caspi and Nick Young. The Houston Rockets kept their core in tact, and added all-star guard Chris Paul. Rumors indicate they could add the New York Knicks forward, Carmelo Anthony later this summer. The Spurs are still the Spurs and the surprise Minnesota Timberwolves seemingly became arguably the second or third best team out west over night. That’s a tough conference. And we’re not even talking about how the Sacramento Kings and new feel Los Angeles teams have improved this summer.

Lonzo Ball is “Balling” Out In Summer League, Accomplishing Rare Feat

While the Thunder should still be competitive, they don’t have the offensive firepower or defensive efficiency to take down the western conference power teams — yet.

If George is expecting to win in Oklahoma City with Westbrook, it may take another star player to join them. Oklahoma City does look better than half the western teams. But George will have to have Westbrook’s commitment to stay with the Thunder past this year as well. Westbrook could leave in next year’s free agency crippling any chance of a championship coming to the midwest.

If that’s the case, George could see himself wearing another uniform next season.

The Orlando Magic Pro Summer League under the radar players who had stand out performances

The Orlando Magic Pro Summer League concluded Thursday with the Dallas Mavericks earning the bragging rights of league champion this year.

It was a grueling six days of summer league basketball in Orlando. Coaches, players, team personnel, and fans were in exhaustion by the end of the leagues’ duration. Most players had not played the grueling five games in six days since youth leagues like AAU. But that’s exactly what a lot of these young men had to do to audition for NBA roster spots.

At times game action wasn’t necessarily dazzling or spectacular. Some games lost interest after the starting minutes. And some were nail bitters ending with game winners. Not every player had a great showing but there were some standout performances from players attempting to earn NBA roster spots.

*Guaranteed lottery selections and players under current NBA contracts were excluded

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