Oklahoma City Thunder guard Shai Gilgeous-Alexander has faith in his team succeeding in the coming seasons. However, he never specified exactly when.
During a podcast interview with Andrew Schlecht of The Athletic, the fourth-year guard opened up about expectations and trade rumors during the 2022 offseason.
“I know what I signed up for when I signed a five-year extension… and I don’t think we’re gonna be losing for much longer,” explained Gilgeous-Alexander. “I believe in this team.”
NBA betting sites are giving the Thunder bottom-five odds of winning the championship in 2023. Their odds of returning to the playoffs are also low. That should go without saying. Find out which sportsbooks have higher expectations.
Shai Gilgeous-Alexander on the speculation that he would want out of Oklahoma City
"I know what I signed up for when I signed a 5 year extension… and I don't think we're gonna be losing for much longer."
"I believe in this team" pic.twitter.com/5Un4Hsb92f
— Andrew Schlecht (@AndrewKSchlecht) September 26, 2022
While the Canadian-born star believes in the Thunder, does anyone else? Oklahoma City has not qualified for the postseason since the 2019-20 season.
The Thunder selected Gonzaga center Chet Holmgren second overall in the 2022 NBA Draft.
Though, during The CrawsOver Pro-Am League event in August, the top prospect sustained a Lisfranc injury while guarding LeBron James.
Holmgren will miss the entire 2022-23 season.
Shai Gilgeous-Alexander has full confidence in the Thunder
Furthermore, in the 2019-20 season, the Thunder finished 44-28 (.611) and fifth overall in the Western Conference. Including Gilgeous-Alexander and fellow teammate Luguentz Dort, the team also had Danilo Gallinari, Chris Paul, Dennis Schroder, and Steven Adams.
During the first round of the 2020 NBA Playoffs, the Thunder went on to lose in seven games against the Houston Rockets inside the Orlando Bubble.
Additionally, then head coach Billy Donovan agreed to part ways with the Thunder. On November 11, 2020, the team promoted assistant coach Mark Daigneault to the head coach position.
Since then, the team has not finished with an above-.500 record under Daigneault. In the 2020-21 season, the Thunder went 22-50 (.306) and ranked 14th overall in the Western Conference.
Last season, Oklahoma City concluded its season 24-58 (.293). For the second consecutive season, the team ranked 14th in the conference and missed the playoffs.
During the 2022 offseason, the Thunder re-signed Dort and Mike Muscala. Plus, Kenrich Williams, Jaylin Williams, and Ousmane Dieng signed contracts. Not to mention, the team waived forwards JaMychal Green and Isaiah Roby.
With Holmgren healthy and Shai Gilgeous-Alexander in the lineup for the 2023-24 season, maybe then the Thunder will return to the playoffs. G.M. Sam Presti is predicting another playoff appearance as well. As for next season, expectations are low.
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