On Friday, we provided an update on the latest rumblings in the Scott Brooks extension talks, in which apparently the Thunder and Brooks remain far apart. Within that post we heard from Marc Stein that should those talks reach an impasse, two names that have surfaced as back up plans are Phil Jackson and Jeff Van Gundy.
Earlier today, we heard that Oklahoma City GM Sam Presti addressed their draft position and luxury tax situation. According to Royce King from Daily Thunder, Presti also dismissed the Jackson/Van Gundy rumors pretty adamantly when he talked to the media. Presti insisted that settling Brooks' contract situation was at the top of the Thunder's offseason checklist:
"It’s rubbish. We value [Brooks] greatly. We wouldn’t be in the situation we’re in without him, and his commitment to our organization and our players," Presti said.
Presti addressed the Thunder's offseason outlook from a roster perspective as well, admitting that he will face plenty of challenges in the near future.
“We love the group that we have. And we’re going to work tirelessly to make it work here. But we understand it, there are some inherent challenges and that’s part of the new system," Presti said.
With the contract situations of Serge Ibaka and James Harden, Presti's maintenance strategy of the Thunder's talented roster will be one of the more intriguing story lines in the NBA over the next few years. You can follow Thunder-specific rumors here.