Sam Presti kicked off media day szn Thursday with a protracted and entertaining session in Oklahoma City. He touched on quite a lot of issues — from Shai Gilgeous-Alexander and his thoughts on drummers vis a vis the event arc of basketball teams — but he had another interesting points to make.
He said that this 12 months’s Thunder are projected to be the second-youngest team in NBA history, behind only last 12 months’s Thunder.
SGA has turn into the most recent young star-level player to hit the rumor market after the Jazz traded Donovan Mitchell to the Cavaliers. Presti was asked his thoughts on that development and he answered, surprisingly, with a dissection of the media ecosystem in 2022.
“The one reason we’re talking about it’s because one other player on one other team got traded,” he said. “The machine — the aggregation machine — is empty now. So we want somewhat more content. That is the value of admission. It is not a penalty. Nobody’s out to attempt to disrupt the Thunder or create problems for the Thunder. That is the business we work in. You should not be surprised by that because there must be content. It is a business. We’d like attention. Attention drives advertisements. Advertisements drive salaries. And that is how it really works. We now have to have the option to perform regardless of that. So I just think I’m level-setting that to say that if Donovan Mitchell was not traded already, you would not ask me that query. So due to this fact, I do not think they’re related.”
While I sat there wondering whether I used to be now a part of this machine, Presti went on. Notably, he segued from a discussion about Pearl Jam to throw hosannas on the feet of Seattle and its place as a basketball city. Seattle, after all, lost its beloved Supersonics to Oklahoma City.
Presti believes they’ll get a team back soon enough.
“Seattle is an incredible place, an incredible city,” he said. “They’ll have a basketball team again… All of us here, we’re hopeful that happens… When it happens it may be great.”
So what does Presti know and when did he understand it? Not exactly tamping down expectations of NBA expansion.
Anyway, in case you thought Presti was just out here saying stuff, he assured listeners that he was not. He began a solution concerning the growth he’s undergone during his 16 years running the Thunder with an assurance that every thing he says is a sincerely held belief. The Presti we see is the Presti everyone gets, and it’s implausible.
“This just isn’t performance art,” he said. “I’m not on Twitter. And this is not Twitter. That is what I actually think.”
(Photo of Sam Presti: Zach Beeker / NBAE via Getty Images)