The NBA debate: The Thunder Buddies are for real

Mark Suchy, Reporter

What if I told you the best team in the National Basketball Association isn’t from the Bay Area?

What if I told you a team that made the conference finals last year, upgraded at two key positions and extended their bench?

What if I also told you they were coached by a man who took a team from the SEC to NCAA National Championship wins in BACK TO BACK years, and, in his first NBA coaching job, turned a team with lottery aspirations to the three seed in the powerful Western Conference playoffs?

I bet you’d also be hopping on the metaphorical bandwagon.

The Oklahoma City Thunder are the best team in the league. Position by position there is not a single team that can compete with their athleticism, offensive ability, defensive prowess, and basketball IQ.

After a series of blockbuster trades orchestrated by the mastermind general manager, Sam Presti, brought superstars Paul George and Carmelo Anthony to Oklahoma City, the Thunder are undoubtedly the best team in basketball.

I know after reading the headline many Warrior bandwagon fans who don’t know what year Stephen Curry was drafted, or cannot name the point guards who were drafted ahead of him (it’s 2009; Jonny Flynn and Ricky Rubio) are rolling their eyes.

But the Thunder, according to ESPN, are one of the best teams in the league at defending the three point shot *cough cough Golden State’s specialty* and are spearheaded by the high energy, irrational, junk-yard dog playstyle of guard Andre Roberson.

Last year’s team lost in the first round of the playoffs BUT I am sure we can all agree that it was basically Russell Westbrook versus the world. Presti was able to see what the rest of the NBA world could not: a team with massive potential.

In a series of moves, Presti surrounded his superstar point guard with two all-stars (Carmelo Anthony and Paul George), acquired the savvy low-post big, Patrick Patterson, as well as signing a legitimate back-up point guard in Raymond Felton. It is not an understatement to say he made out like a bandit.

Not to mention that the Thunder drafted the ultra-athletic shooting guard, Terrence “2k” Ferguson and still have sharpshooter Alex Abrines from the 2016-2017 team.

And to think all the Thunder lost is an average shooting guard and two power forwards, who didn’t fit Westbrook’s play style.

I am not saying the journey to an NBA title is easy and we should crown the Thunder NBA champions right now. Anything can happen through the course of the 82 game regular season and brutal playoffs.

However, you’d be an idiot to not recognize the Oklahoma City Thunder as the clear front-runner.