Thunder Still Loved By National TV Networks

By Randy Renner, Senior Writer

When the NBA released the full regular season schedule yesterday one thing was pretty clear...the national TV networks still love the Thunder.

And why shouldn't they?

Superstar Russell Westbrook, the reigning NBA MVP now has another superstar teammate in Paul George. There's plenty of drama also with Westbrook still not having signed the supermax extension the Thunder have offered him and George seeming to be open to possibility of staying in OKC longterm as long as Westbrook does the same.

It's a storyline that will likely play out all through the regular season and into the playoffs.

With all that in mind, plus the idea that the Thunder could challenge for second place in the Western Conference, the team is sure to draw a lot eyeballs watching a lot of games.

Oklahoma City will have at least 37 games on national TV, that's up from 30 last season, spread out across ABC, TNT, ESPN and NBA-TV.

The Thunder will also be featured on ABC's Saturday night NBA package three times.

This season's schedule also ends the chore of having to play four games in five nights for all teams...back-to-backs are being reduced (though only by one for OKC 14 this season down from 15 last season) and the Thunder will not have an extended road trip.

The most games in any one stretch away from home will just be three games (six times during the season) and the longest homestand is four games (twice).

 

 

 

Thunder Sign Hamilton To Two-Way Deal

Shooting guard Daniel Hamilton playing on the Thunder's Summer league team in Orlando, Florida.

Shooting guard Daniel Hamilton playing on the Thunder's Summer league team in Orlando, Florida.

By Randy Renner, Senior Writer

The Thunder have taken advantage of a new feature in the latest Collective Bargaining Agreement going into effect this season.

Two-way contracts.

OKC Blue shooting guard Daniel Hamilton inked the new type of contract yesterday, the first ever in Thunder history.

It will allow the 6-6 Hamilton to spend as many as 45 days with the Thunder, practicing and playing in games. For ever day he's in a Thunder uniform he'll be paid a pro-rated portion of the NBA's rookie minimum salary which is just over $800,000. 

The contract will bump his OKC Blue pay up to $75,000.

Here is a portion of the Thunder's official press release announcing the move.

Hamilton spent the 2016-17 season with the Oklahoma City Blue, appearing in 49 games (47 starts) and averaging 14.9 points, 8.0 rebounds and 4.7 assists in 31.2 minutes per game. His rebounds led all qualifying rookie guards in the G League.

The California native led the Blue with 15 double-doubles and added the team’s only triple-double of the season, the fifth in team history.

“Daniel has shown significant strides in his development since entering our program,” said Thunder General Manager Sam Presti. “We are thrilled that he will receive the first two-way contract in Thunder history as we expect him to spend time with both teams this season as he continues to evolve as a player.”

Hamilton competed with the Thunder in the 2017 Mountain Dew Orlando Pro Summer League, where he started four games and averaged 11.8 points, 5.3 rebounds and an Orlando Summer League-high 6.8 assists in 31.0 minutes per game.

Hamilton was drafted No. 56 overall in the 2016 NBA Draft after spending two seasons at the University of Connecticut. In his time at UConn, he was named American Athletic Conference (AAC) Rookie of the Year, an AAC All-Conference Second Teamer and the Most Outstanding Player of the 2016 AAC Championship.

Digging a little deeper into Hamilton's stats, he hit 76.7 percent of his free throw attempts and turned the ball over 2.9 times a game. He had an offensive rating of 104 and a defensive rating of 102.

Earlier this summer the Thunder signed Hamilton's OKC Blue teammate Dakari Johnson to a 2-year full NBA contract and the team has another two-way contract available to use.

 

 

Ferguson Puts Pen To Paper

By Randy Renner, Senior Writer

As we told you on Friday Thunder 1st round draft pick Terrance Ferguson agreed to a contract and then Saturday morning he tweeted a photo as he sat at the team's practice facility signing the documents.

An image from Terrance Ferguson's Twitter feed (@the2kferguson) as he signs his Thunder contract on Saturday.

An image from Terrance Ferguson's Twitter feed (@the2kferguson) as he signs his Thunder contract on Saturday.

Full financial terms of the contract haven't been disclosed but the 21st pick in the 2017 Draft is slotted to make $1.487 million in the first season of the deal. Ferguson could have signed for that or anywhere from 80 to 120 percent of that amount.

Regardless he is likely to spend most of his time this season playing for the Oklahoma City Blue of the newly renamed NBA G League.

Here is a portion of the official press release sent out by the Thunder.

Ferguson (6-7, 184), was drafted by Oklahoma City with the 21st overall pick in the 2017 NBA Draft, after spending last season with the Adelaide 36ers of Australia’s National Basketball League. He averaged 4.6 points and 1.2 rebounds in 15.2 minutes per game and scored in double figures four times, including a season-high 13 points twice.  

The Tulsa, Okla. native, has been a member of gold-medal winning teams in three different FIBA events, going 19-0 in major competitions during his career. Ferguson averaged 7.1 points on 40.0 percent (48-of-120) shooting from the field and 33.3 percent (24-of-72) shooting from beyond the arc, 2.1 rebounds and 1.5 assists in 20.4 minutes per game.  

As a high schooler, he spent three seasons at Prime Prep Academy and played his senior season at Advanced Prep International, both based in Dallas, Texas. He played for the U.S. Junior Select Team at the 2016 Nike Hoop Summit, scoring 21 points in 15 minutes. At the 2016 McDonald’s All-American Game, he recorded 10 points and three rebounds in 16 minutes.     

Now that Ferguson has signed his contract he cannot be included in any trade for at least 30 days.

That Thunder roster now stands at 16 players, 15 of those contracts are guaranteed. Semaj Christon's deal for the upcoming season is worth $1.3 million but is not guaranteed.

Report: Thunder And Terrance Ferguson Agree To Contract Terms

Thunder rookie shooting guard Terrance Ferguson speaks to reporters in Oklahoma City on June 24th. (Photo By: Randy Renner/InsideThunder.com)

Thunder rookie shooting guard Terrance Ferguson speaks to reporters in Oklahoma City on June 24th. (Photo By: Randy Renner/InsideThunder.com)

By Randy Renner, Senior Writer

It's taken a while for Thunder 1st round draft pick Terrance Ferguson to get his clearance from FIBA but now that it's happened he has reportedly agreed to contract terms with the Thunder.

Shams Charania of The Vertical reports the deal will be for four years, which is generally what's done.

More than likely the first two years will be guaranteed and the next two years will be team options.

Terms have not been disclosed yet but Ferguson could be paid between 80 and 120 percent of his rookie slotted salary of $1.487 million.

Ferguson is the last 1st round draft pick to reach a deal with an NBA team.

He played last season in Australia and had to receive clearance from FIBA in order to play in the NBA.

The Thunder had hoped to have Ferguson signed in time to be able to participate in the Orlando Summer League but once that opportunity passed there was really no hurry to get something done.

There was also the possibility the Thunder were waiting to see if Ferguson might need to be included in any sort of trade scenario (Carmelo Anthony for instance) because the team can deal him at any time before a contract is signed. After the signatures are pn the paperwork Ferguson can't be traded for at least 30 days.

The Thunder's projected payroll will jump up to right around $130 million, putting them around $11 million over the luxury tax line.

 

The News Unis Are Here!! The New Unis Are Here!! Sort Of...

By Randy Renner, Senior Writer

We've been telling you the last several weeks not to expect any big changes in the Thunder uniforms for this coming season, no redesigned logo, no changes in the overall look, no OBVIOUS changes from what we're used to seeing.

And with the Thunder showing mockups of the new design that's exactly what's happened.

There are subtle changes...the "OKC" brand on the beltline of the shorts and the Nike swoosh. Maybe the biggest changes the players will notice is the difference in materials used to make the uniform and a little roominess around the arm holes of the jerseys.

In case you haven't seen them here's an artist rendering of the uniforms the Thunder sent out.

And here's a more detailed reading of the new uniforms from a Thunder press release.

With an eye toward tradition entering into its 10th season, the Oklahoma City Thunder today shared the designs for two of its new uniforms for the 2017-18 season, as part of the partnership between the NBA and Nike.

The Association and Icon editions feature a consistent look with the team’s previous home and road uniforms, but are built on innovation and technological research that have keyed into the needs of the athlete.

Major updates to the design and materials include:

- Modified cuts at the back shoulder and at the hemline of the shorts, allowing for greater range of motion
- Altered seams at the armhole, neck and side to eliminate distractions and irritation
- Materials that wick sweat 30 percent faster than previous NBA uniforms
- Fabric comprised of Alpha Yarns and recycled polyester; each uniform represents approximately 20 recycled PET bottles
- The addition of the Nike logo on the front of the jersey and shorts
- A new design element at the belt buckle to highlight team identity

A significant change for the 2017-18 season is that teams will be able to select which jersey to wear for each home game. Visiting teams will choose a contrasting uniform from their available options. For the Thunder, the Association edition will be similar to the home white uniform of previous years; the Icon edition resembles the road blue uniform. On both uniforms, “OKC” has been added at the belt buckle.

Both the Association and Icon edition jerseys and shorts will be on sale starting Sept. 29 at the Thunder Shop at Chesapeake Energy Arena and through the team’s retail website, okcthunder.com/shop.

The two remaining 2017-18 uniform editions for the Thunder will be revealed later this fall.

Those two additional uniforms will be alternate type uniforms and right now what they're going to look like is a bug mystery. For fans wanting some sort of interesting new look those two uniforms will be where you're most likely to see it.