Victor oladipo trade makes choice for kevin durant clear_ stay with oklahoma city thunder _ the national

On close examination, it’s hard to come away with any conclusion other than the Oklahoma City Thunder unreservedly smashed their draft-day trade with the Orlando Magic.

The deal shipped Oklahoma City’s increasingly marginalised Serge Ibaka for Victor Oladipo, Ersan Ilyasova and the draft rights to Domantas Sabonis. Definition of trade publication With it, Oklahoma City instantly swapped out a player who had been slowly devolving into a kind of in-betweener misfit in the team’s setup for two players who can valuably fill roles right away and a third who might both contribute now and develop into a star down the road.

It brings in a capable, young and still-improving two-way guard to pair with Russell Westbrook in the backcourt in Oladipo.


Definition of modern trade One who especially augments what is already a fearsome, long-armed defence that gave Golden State nightmares in the Western Conference finals.

It also replaces much of what they lost in Ibaka (the current, diminished version, at least) with Ilyasova and, for good measure, adds roster flexibility in Sabonis – the son of legendary Lithuanian centre Arvydas – and the considerable potential he may deliver on.

None of this, though, in and of itself is so important even as it makes the team measurably better for next season. Trade sales definition What is important is it makes the team measurably better for next season and sends a signal to Kevin Durant.

Without Durant, who enters free agency as one of the most significant figures to ever potentially change teams in a summer, whose move would rival past earth-shakers like LeBron James (2010 and 2014) and Shaquille O’Neal (1996), none of Oklahoma City’s sudden improvement means anything.

But as Durant prepares to meet with the likes of the Golden State Warriors and San Antonio Spurs (shudder the thought of him joining one of those two), the trade should at least give him a slight pause.

Oklahoma City were within touching distance of the NBA Finals this season. Trade in goods and services definition They were, arguably, the better team even as they fell to the Warriors after going 3-1 up in the effective semi-final round.

He might be able to team up with Kawhi Leonard and LaMarcus Aldridge and give the Spurs the scariest smallish-ball frontcourt ever assembled. Trade source definition He might be able to make the Warriors an 80-win team.

He could make the resurrection of the New York Knicks real, or get the LA Clippers to the promised land, or settle in with one of the game’s best coaches and an exciting project in Boston.

The Thunder have shown they are going to be aggressive in trying to get to that next level with the Oladipo deal. Strategic trade policy definition There is noise they are even going after Al Horford, which would be an absolute coup.

Rearrange and reinforce the current OKC roster, as the Orlando trade did, and one can easily make the argument the Thunder should be title favourites – with Durant.

Moreover, Durant does not need to be in a rush. Balance of trade definition quizlet He can test how good these Thunder are going forward, sign a short-term max deal with an opt-out, and be just as highly coveted and just as prepared to get paid handsomely as the NBA’s salary cap inflates even further in 12 months’ time.

LeBron James once had to join forces with a “super team” in Miami to get over the title hump. Definition of trade school Kevin Durant may not fully appreciate it just at this moment, but there may be no better place for him to join one himself than where he is right now.

The deal sent Thunder stretch-four stalwart Serge Ibaka to Florida for Victor Oladipo, Ersan Ilyasova and the draft rights to Domantas Sabonis.

Analytically, it replaces Ibaka, worth 5.5 win shares and 1.2 VORP by BasketballReference last season, and 3.1 estimated wins added by John Hollinger, with Ilyasova’s 4.4 win shares, 1.0 VORP and 2.6 EWA (admittedly, ESPN’s real plus-minus metrics are far less kind to the difference between Congo’s Ibaka and Turkey’s Ilyasova).

With the added bonus of 24-year-old Oladipo’s 4.9 win shares, 2.3 VORP and 7.4 EWA. National trade definition By ESPN’s RPM rate stat, the son of Nigerian and Sierra Leonan immigrants was the 40th-best player in the league last year at plus-2.59. Trade restrictions definition And, oh, whatever else Sabonis brings.

It really is remarkable how far Ibaka has fallen. Trade value definition He was nearly a 10-win player by BkRef in his age 23 and 24 seasons, a rim-protecting monster with a soft touch inside and range to step back a few feet.

But Steven Adams’ emergence as a wall in the middle has reduced the value of Ibaka’s rim protection and his rebounding ability, and the extension of his offensive game further and further from the basket has left him as a kind of overqualified three-point specialist who, really, is only just decent at three-point shooting.

His defence will of more value to an Orlando team who love Nikola Vucevic’s offence inside but need to give him some cover. Definition of cap and trade system It’s not a stretch to think Ibaka’s value numbers should recover nicely in Orlando.

Oladipo, meanwhile, could be perfectly suited to Oklahoma City, where he can scale back his offensive role and contribute to what can be an excellent defence. Definition of global trade patterns His mid-20 per cent usage rates in Orlando were out of line with his offensive ability, but he has steadily improved as a willing and able three-point shooter (34.8 per cent last season).

Playing next to Westbrook and (in theory) Durant, he should have better looks from three. Passing trade definition If he can be a marksman who occasionally breaks down defences and guards up the defensive spectrum, you can envision him being a bit like a backcourt Draymond Green.

His value numbers will inevitably decline with his reduced importance in the OKC system, but in terms of contributing more to a greater whole, he has a skill set the Thunder can make fine use of.

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