Thunder Extend Ibaka, Harden Next?

HANG TIME NEW JERSEY — The Oklahoma City Thunder will have one fewer question to answer when training camp opens in six weeks.

Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! reports that the Thunder have reached an agreement on a contract extension with Serge Ibaka. The deal is for four years (starting in 2013-14) and $48 million.

Ibaka, 22, could’ve been a restricted free agent next summer, and his deal now locks into place three of the Thunder’s core young stars — Kevin Durant, Russell Westbrook and Ibaka. Durant and Westbrook each have the maximum contracts allowed under the NBA’s collective bargaining agreement.

This deal leaves the future uncertain for guard James Harden, who could command a maximum contract on the league market as a restricted free agent next summer. Along with the remainder of Kendrick Perkins‘ three years and $27 million, the small-market Thunder will be hard-pressed to invest so much money into their payroll.

Many wondered if the Thunder would have to choose between Harden and Ibaka, but they’ve always had the intention to keep them both. Now that Ibaka’s extension is taken care of, they can move on to Harden.

According to Sam Presti in a conference call announcing the Ibaka extension, keeping Harden is still a top priority:

“We’re going to continue our conversations with James. We very much value him,” Presti said. “We want him to be part of the organization moving forward. We’re excited he’s a member of the Thunder and we hope he’ll be with us for years moving forward.”

Back in June, Harden seemed to indicate that he’d be willing to take less money in order to stay with the Thunder, as Darnell Mayberry of the Oklahoman reported

Harden is widely considered to be a top five shooting guard and potentially a third maximum-allowable contract level player. But he said Saturday that team success is more important to him than money and potentially making more elsewhere.

“This is something special here,” Harden said. “A dynasty is being built here. So we’re winning, we’re having fun and we’re brothers. The other stuff, you can’t buy it.”

Harden said his close friendships with his teammates is an extremely important factor in his decision as well.

“This team is like a family,” Harden said. “Like, we’re really brothers. We hang out most of the time every single day. You won’t find any other team like this. I love it here.”

The way some big men have been paid over the last year, Ibaka’s deal is pretty reasonable. And if the Thunder can get Harden’s signature on a similar extension in the next two months, they’ll be ready to roll this season … and far beyond that.


  1. Bob M says:

    Where is all the money going to come from? Signing Ibaka is, probably, the end of Harden after next year. Unless, OKC does a television station like the Yankees did years ago to pay the luxury tax. My prediction is that they will try to get PJIII up to speed and he will be the Harden replacement. KD and Russell signing the max deals leaves short money for the rest of the team.
    The big three concept is the new wave in the NBA, but after you sign your FA’s in a bunch, you are going to face problems about 3 years into their deals. Age and injuries to the superstars and the weaker benches, will shipwreck a few title dreams. I dare to say that if D Wade wasn’t so tough, Miami would not have won last year. Take out a Kobe, KD, LBJ out of a line up and the whole dynamic changes…………… or take a D Rose out

  2. lakerBANDWAGON says:

    all of a sudden the lakers are the bad guys and no longer the miami heat. GO OKC! BEAT LA! BEAT LA!

  3. rizz says:

    Whoever says Howard doesn’t make a huge difference over Bynum don’t know much. Offensively yeah they are pretty similar but it’s the defensive end where the difference will be felt. Howard is a beast when it comes to rebounds and blocks. He has won 3 DPoY awards due to his defense. He’s like Tyson Chandler but better and he brings an offensive presence. What Dwight means to LA?

    Great contribution offensively. Amazing Rebounder so will help with 2nd chance points and to prevent fastbreaks from opposing teams. An amazing rim protector if not one of the best and will prevent guys like LBJ, Wade, KD, and Westbrook from penetrating and getting easy buckets which takes away majorly from their game. His athleticism will contribute greatly towards easy fastbreak points and alley oops from Nash. He adds so much more then Bynum and he is a player that you will know will step up and give his best at both ends of the floor every single night.

    La against OKC. Howard helps fill so many gaps with L.A. mostly defensively. Westbrook and KD are going to have a hard time penetrating and making easy shots when they got Superman protecting the rim and swatting their layup attempts into the third row. Howard and Pau are gonna rack up boards against Ibaka and Perkins giving L.A. more second chance points as well as more fastbreak opportunities. Ibaka and Perkins don’t pose an offensive threat allowing Pau and Howard to help other positions making it harder for OKC to penetrate inside. Kobe doesn’t have to shoulder the scoring and facilitating load and Nash just makes everyone better. Expect a lot of pick and rolls with Gasol and Howard down low. MWP can put a body on Durant making it more difficult for him to score and with Howard protecting the rim that takes a lot away from his game. Jamison is a big offensive threat off the bench as well as Hill and Meeks so between the OKC bench and LA’s bench it is about even. Overall OKC poses the biggest threat to L.A. cause they do have some size with Ibaka and Perkins and they have superior speed in KD and Westbrook but we got a dominant big man in Howard who you know will come out and own both ends of the floor on a daily basis, we got one of the best traditional PG in the league in Nash, we got one of the best players in the league in Bryant even if he is in the tail end of his career, we got a solid bench, we got size over most any team, we got better defensively in a huge way, we got better offensively as well as more efficient offensively. You got to remember even though we lost 4-1 to OKC last season a lot of those games were close and we just made our team a whole heck of a lot better and we filled a lot of the gaps that were open last season. I bet we win 4-2 in the playoffs.

  4. KANTUTAN says:


  5. john says:


    Westbrook is an engine alright but a Pinto engine. With the guy that’s not willing to share the ball like that OKC will never win championship period….

  6. OKC FAN says:


  7. theking0522 says:

    At least the Lakers might win more than 1 game in the second round…LOL…Oh wait..unless they face the Thunder again..If they do, they will only win one game..again.

  8. theking0522 says:

    Ok, everybody knows who is going to be in the NBA Finals again. So I am going to ask the same questions I asked at the beginning of last NBA season…..Can we fast-forward to the NBA Finals between the Heat and OKC already? That rematch is going to be great from ratings!!! We all know they are going to be there at the end of the season..There is not point for other pretenders to be playing basketball. Period……

  9. Putok says:

    Harden is going to suns!!! I dont think lakers will get it all the way but im a lakers fan but i think Heat will win it all. We all have our own teams and MAY THE BEST TEAM WIN

  10. slimpulla says:

    The Lakers will likely win alot of games this year but I still give the edge in the playoffs to the Thunder. Simply because of that gel that Harden expressed in the article, along with the experience they got last year, and youth at the end of the season. However, they still lost convincingly to the Heat and they have not addressed that while the Heat have placed shooters and big men to the bench, their biggest problem. Harden can start on any team but is not a max contract player. Thinking long term it might be best to get rid of Perkins and trade Harden for a decent big man and second tier back up guard. IJS

  11. YellowLakeShow says:

    the problem with OKC is they have no post game. Perimeter teams can win championships like the mavs did but its very variable. If OKC has a hot shooting streak im sure they can beat any team but getting shots in the paint are higher percentage. Miami won because James, Wade and Bosh can score down-low, and they’ll be in the finals again because of it.

  12. john says:

    Back to for the Heat.. i can’t wait………Allen and Lewis???hmmmmmm bangx

  13. john says:

    Miami Heat is back to back championship this season…..sorry lakers fans

  14. theking0522 says:

    Ok, everybody knows who is going to be in the NBA Finals again. So I am going to ask the same questions I asked at the beginning of last NBA season…..Can we fast-forward to the NBA Finals between the Heat and OKC already? That rematch is going to be great from ratings!!! We all know they are going to be there at the end of the season..There is not point for other pretenders to be playing basketball. Period.

  15. john says:

    Miami will win this season again…remember this post….Lakers is nothing not winning ds season…. H12 is crying babies…….K24 is not loyal to his family his always cheating……..he never get a championship again.

  16. underdog says:

    1 heat, 2 celtics, 3 bulls, 4 sixers, 5 knicks, 6 nets, 7 pacers, 8 wizards/hawks
    East champs: Celtics

    1 thunder, 2 spurs, 3 lakers, 4 clippers, 5 nuggets, 6 grizzlies, 7-8 warriors/twolves/
    West champs: Lakers

    2013 Champs: Celtics

  17. arrow323 says:


  18. lakerpinoy20 says:

    good move by OKC as this signing will solidify their future……… but hats off to the buzz family. they are not afraid to spend to make the LAKERS better if not the best. that’s why they are always relevant every season even without necessarily winning the championship. they have a lot to prove next season with the vastly improved lineup but most likely they will command respect again. LAKERS play for rings and that is always the team’s battle cry. i have great respect for heat, okc, spurs and celtics but next season they will bleed to win a game against LAKERS. GO LAKERS FOR YOUR 17TH CHAMPIONSHIP!

  19. Angelo says:

    i’m giving the West top spot of the season to the Lakers because of, well, Nash, Kobe, Dwight. but i am giving the edge to the OKC come playoffs. Lakers has some issues to solve. I really love Nash but he will be a defensive liability against westbrook and harden (given Harden finishes his season with the Thunders), Metta is not the defensive monster he was known of earlier in his career. Kobe will always be Kobe but older, and not in a positive way. Pau still has inconsistency problems. Dwight still can’t shoot freebies. Nash-DH12 combo will be nightmare offensively for the other teams. but how about Nash-Kobe? unless Kobe transforms into a consistent catch-and-shoot player, or vice versa, i don’t really see them clicking at the same time on the floor. and LAL bench for me is average if not below. Perk can defend against Howard, Serge can defend against Pau, KD can defend Metta or Kobe, Thabo can defend Kobe, westbrook can defend Nash. While Nash can’t defend Westbrook, Kobe can defend harden but the wear and tear on kobe will be felt, Metta could try 2 hang around against KD, Pau can defend Serge and Perk is not really a defensive threat. So it’s a slight edge for OKC. and also, team chemistry and coaching will be in favor of the thunders, (new PG on a new system and a coach trying a new system won’t be easy for the LALALAND)

  20. ReasonInYourFace says:

    Please! I have absolutley NO problems with Heat fans, Lakers fans, Celtics fans and so on,,, I watch the NBA for the fun of the competition. Now when LeBron went to the Heat( and Bosh) there are people like lbj and cb1 who destroys the joy of reading the news regarding this upcoming season. I believe the reason for the cemmenting stuff is too discuss with our different opinions… But something like Ibaka to heat, Howard to heat, CP3 to heat are BASED ON DREAMING! Dreams with no sense at all… My point is; BAN PEOPLE WHO EVEN MENTIONS ANYTHING LIKE THAT.
    Thank you 🙂

  21. OKC baby says:

    What people fail to see is how little of a difference Howard can possibly make on a team which already had the 2 nd best centre in the league with a better offensive game this is going to be the year we all see Kobe decline sadly enough becoz he is such a great player but mwp is useless and Kd Westbrook harden and iblocka have had a chance to mature and now have a bit of a chip on there shoulder.lakers will make 2 nd round but will be the disappointment of the league and will be beaten by a younger team ( not necessarily OKC) but maybe a sleeper team like Memphis or even the twolves

  22. Brendan Hynes says:

    If Harden wont sacrifice money if needed for a chance at a ring il give up on all superstars of the nba. they all move to get that ring. albeit some do need to. Nash at the end of his career had a chance to go to a big franchise that ahve always been a contender. And i hate to say it lebron. if the management was half as good as what MJ had aroundhim. lebron wouldn’t have to leave. But when the likes of dwight leaving orlando that frustrates me. Back in the 80’s 90’s player didn’t leave to a team with another superstar. they grew harder, stronger and better to gain the ultimate success. not take the easy option.

    Harden to stay at thunder please!!

    Even though im an orlando fan!!

  23. nevertheless says:

    oh yeah, somebody mentioned Tyson Chandler. Perfect-perfect for the Thunder. Defends everything, rebounds everything. No comparison to Perkins, sorry. Dallas won champs cos he was there, look how far they got this year without him. Ok, NY was not much of a success this year, but if they find Stoudemaire’s and Melo’s spot in offense, they will be good for top 4 in East, even without Linsanity 😀

  24. nevertheless says:

    Well, if you think LAL will not be a championship contender by saying their guys are post prime you are wrong. Bench is strong, players are strong. They gonna dominate the paint so it made good sense for the Thunder to sign Ibaka in the first place. Though he is so impotent at the offensive end that the 12m per year contract is just excessive. Too bad that other teams would have paid the similar amount so OKC just had to did it to keep him on the roster.

    What Ibaka is in the paint, that is what Harden means from the Bench for OKC: MOMENTUM. You can’t afford not to have that. What you can (or could have) afford(ed) was to not sign a turnover prone playmaker that is no championship caliber for a max 5 year deal. I believe if something this will be a more problematic area for the Thunder, not this year, but next summer when their hands will be tied or they will end up paying luxury tax.

    This year OKC has to make it at least to the finals. And with LAL being their biggest contender I am just not sure if thats gonna happen. They would need more offensive versatility from low post players especially down the stretch cos Ibaka and Perkins… Com’on, not better than average at that end.

  25. DAOR says:

    Thunder still a solid team with Ibaka to remain. Championship ring is possible for those team remain intact. And this team had a bright future. Miami was just lucky on last june’s final. Come on…. repeat it on 2013. I’m sure, thunder may able to handle it.

  26. LBJ Fan says:

    Harden should re-sign with the Thunder..and fyi Thunder is younger,stronger and better than lakers and miami

  27. Daniel says:

    This is an important move for the Thunder, he’s only gonna get better. But, if the Thunder let Harden walk (highly doubt it) it would be the hugest blunder in this young franchise’s history. However, I do like that Thunder frontcourt, probably the best in the entire league

  28. Just think! says:

    OKC, for me is still a solid team, but not as solid as last year. They wont make the playoffs (if they do) as easily as last year. Let’s be honest Lakers, Mavs added new fire power to their teams, while Thunder remained the same and for all the people saying that Perry Jones III is a steal, there is no evidence yet! He wasn’t impressive in the summer league which means he could’nt be called the biggest steal in the draft!!!! That is Stupid!!!. Signing Ibaka made a lot of sense for the thunder, but signing him over what they claim to be their Top Priority in Harden is kinda lousy, Harden should have gotten singed first and HE SHOULDN’T GET LESS!!!!! just look at Ibaka’s new contract don’t tell me Harden doesn’t deserve the same or even bigger contract than that. Harden will later (hopefully) realize that there is no real family in the NBA only teammates and sometimes teammates want more selfishly rather than think abut their so called brothers. Harden is not gonna sing an extension easily after signing Ibaka ahead of him and what hoping he signs less. That’s stupid! For me Thunder should be worried about the Suns, they obviously want him and they have a bigger salary space than the Thunder does. So let’s see what lies they’ll tell Harden and how cheap of a contract they’re gonna offer.

  29. VINCIBOY says:

    OKC just needs a Legit Center to win a championship they can’t rely on Perkins alone. They need a center like Nene or Hibbert.

  30. LINs says:

    @lbj you are clearly just a LeBron hater. You use the nick lbj and you speak all these trash like this. I mean, it doesn’t even make sense! It’s clearly impossible. You just want people to continue to hate on LeBron and the heat. I mean, it’s so obvious…

  31. Jj says:

    Harden won’t leave, he’s great but on any other team he will be very ordinary

  32. kumag says:

    if they would re sign harden i wonder what the remaining bench would look like, but then again how can they past the lakers this time

  33. SaYO says:

    honestly i don’t think harden is that good yet… yeah he makes a fine 6th man.. but i honestly think he dissapointed so horribly in the playoffs… i thought the lakers should’ve beated the thunder or atleast the series shoulda been 3-1 by game 4 when lakers lost the lead late in 2 of the games… than when thunders beated lakers, i was rooting thunders all the way.. i saw james harden play .. and man i was like.. really?? he missed a wide open layup when wade was running up behind him.,. how? why? yeah i think hes a good fit in thunders.. but i think people are well too appreciative of him.. if anything.. the only reason thunders are title competitors.. is obviously because Russel.. kevin.. and ibaka…

  34. PUTOK says:

    i heard james harden would love to play in phoenix suns. total respect for james harden if he signs in thunder with less money.. ive never heard of player saying that!! nowadays its all about the money!!

  35. Laker Nation says:

    Let James Harden go, So he can join the Lakers as their sixth man

    Welcome to the Lakers Dwight!

    Pg: Steve Nash

    Sg: Kobe Bryant

    Sf: Metta World Peace

    Pf: Pau Gasol

    C: Dwight Howard

    Sixth Man: James Harden

    Bench: Steve Blake, Jordan Hill, Antawn Jamison, Chris Duhon, and Jodie Meeks

    2012-2013 NBA CHAMPIONS #BeatTheHEAT

  36. ThunderManagementHearMe!!! says:

    offer Harden a 4 year contract for $3 million , anyway team success is more important to him than money and this is the way to help his team to be able to add more pieces.They are like family and like brothers. “The other stuff you can’t buy it.” Let us see if he really meant what he said. LOL!!!

  37. OKCfan says:

    Play out the year develop Cole amnesty Perkin resign Harden and hopefully Maynor aswell. And yeah take less money they were resigned way b4 this so how could they take less money? Ibaka is needed for OKC defends that paint and is a presence on defense. Going miss perkin solid downlow defender but we need Harden

  38. Choker says:

    I thought the THunder can only keep one of them….

  39. lakerfan says:

    I see James Harden is young and naive. He should go for a larger contract because at the end of the day its all about money. We all know the owners don’t care about the players, to them they’re stock, cattle.

  40. COTLG says:

    In my opinion Westbrook is the engine of the OKC team. Most times that Durant seems lost and frustrated, it is Westbrook who provides the spark.

  41. laker 4 life says:

    Lakers should trade pau gasol for ibaka new starting lineup:
    pg: steve nash
    sg: kobe bryant
    c: howard

  42. ballin' says:

    Harden should’ve been a priority way b4 Ibaka. They both played horrible in the Finals but Harden’s the teams best playmaker. U can see, he’s made a significant improvement just by winning 6th man while Ibaka is still very limited offensivley and isnt a dominant rebounder either. Yes, his defensive is great but he isnt worth $12mil per yer…Perkins is also almost good for nothing nowadays and I would look to trade him asap. OKC needs to grab a bigman who can score and if Maynor can give u solid production off the bench, they should be really good. Beating MIA & LA will be very tough tho

  43. josh says:

    james harden go to miami heat for a championship if OKC does not resign you..,

  44. KD35Rules says:

    You can’t say that Kev and Russ should take less money because it’s impossible. Their contracts were signed two and one year ago respectively…OKC should get rid of perkins, get a decent cheaper center and develop Cole Aldrich

  45. Beast says:

    Sign and trade harden and sephalosha for Eric gorden

  46. RgR says:

    You know.. its nice that Harden said they are brothers and winning is more important than money elsewhere, so how come Durant and Westbrooke didn’t take less ? The only player on that team that deserves the max is Durant.

  47. Joseph_03 says:

    I do hope they lock up Harden as well. Unfortunately, they’ll probably be deep into tax territory if they do that. Ibaka, KD and Westbrook really deserve their respective deals. However,.it would be more plausible to build a dynasty if they took a little less. OKC is a small market compared to other contenders, they” be hard pressed to even break even if they keep spending like this. They better get some finance guru to help them make more money if they want to keep this group together.

    Nonetheless I believe they should package Perkins to a team in the east since that conference is quite the game changing players who play through the post like Bynum, Nene and Hibbert. In addition to the hopefully up and comming Andre Drummond. Hence, if you don’t have any of the aforementioned players you will need a post defender who can anchor your defense, here is where Perkins comes into the picture. The west is not so loaded with burly post players, even Dwight Howard is not a post dominant player, he plays more from the pick and roll rather than the post. The closest the West has to east corps of post players is Cousins, who is in a struggling team so it wouldn’t really matter.

  48. THUNDER UP says:

    YES, You are all forgetting they got Perry Jones (STEAL OF THE DRAFT) 3 or 4 years, OKC is going to be the most dominant team for a long time. If Perry does live up to what he says hes going to do, watch out. These young core of guys have a REALLY BRIGHT future ahead of them. BUT DONT COUNT OUT THE LAKERS. Past prime Kobe still got game. Steve Nash is so consistent for his age. Howard is arguably the best center in the league. THIS SEASON NEEDS TO HURRY! CANT WAIT TO SEE THESE TEAMS AND THEIR NEW ADDITIONS

  49. KIWI says:

    Great for serge ibaka hes only going to better .. if money is an issue maybe they should trade harden + perkins to the blazers for lamarcus alridge + nicolas batum? .. sounds like a trade that works both ways

    • QuestionMark says:

      I would rather trade Harden and Perkins to the Knicks for Chandler and maybe Iman Shumpert or JR Smith, or to the Suns for Gortat and Shannon Brown. OKC needs to maintain their frontcourt defense and get a good SG, Aldridge isn’t as good a defender as Perkins, but can score more and at the same time, Chandler and Gortat are good low post defenders and can score better than Perkins. That is if Harden has to be traded, I would rather keep him.

  50. Danny says:

    Harden to Suns!

  51. Gwoei says:

    this is a joke, if they’re really brother like what Harden said, why not all take less money together, why should it be only Harden to sacrifice?

  52. Anonmous says:

    Dang. In dreamworld they let him go and he went to Boston…..But good decision by OKC, they will meet Lakers at some point in the playoffs

    • tyrone says:

      They will forever hate each over like the Pacers and Pistons, Knicks and Bulls, Detroit and Chicago, Miller and Ewing

  53. OKC says:

    trade Westbrook for Rondo

  54. LBJ fan says:

    Okc should re-sign all of there players, be patient & wait for Russel & James to blossom because they are going to be THAT dam good.

  55. jaxwel13 says:

    harden is the best 6th player in NBA being a champs is not falling in ur hand need sacrifice & hardwork and good organization.every team in NBA had their own talent so OKC should put the pieces to build as a champ like HEAT.

  56. jack cole says:

    they should get rid WESBROOK…he wants to over-shadow DURANT….HARDEN is one heck of a baller….IBAKA is solid

    • Amitpal says:

      I don’t want to hear all this nonsense that russel is a selfish player and needs to be traded. Russell is an unstoppable player. And he a competior. Russell complements this team really good. They need scoring from him. Damn it if nobody from okc is complaining why r u guys. He’s a shooting trying to learn point and he’s doing a pretty good job at it. He a beast on defense and he did a great job in the finals. Besides maybe d rose no else is better suited for this team then Westbrook.

      • RgR says:

        He’s a beast on defense and they already have their best on offense, like most people say.. its not like KD ISN’T getting his shot attempts, but for sure a lot of other players arn’t. OKC will never win until they get rid of Westbrooke – or he changes his game – that’s just how it is, but hey I like the youngings and hope they can prove me wrong, always fun to root for them, lots of heart … just need some more basketball IQ from Westbrooke.

      • Krespino says:

        Westbrook is the player that makes OKC a contender. He is special, with his style of play and scoring. I believe he is as much important to his team as Rose is to the Bulls. Take out Westbrook, OKC is an ordinary team.

      • dan'o says:

        Getting better each year … they’d be fools to loose him

      • QuestionMark says:

        True, I don’t have a problem with Westbrook scoring but I have a problem with Westbrook shooting too much, KD tends to disappear and sit there on offense and let Westbrook shoot and do all the scoring, Westbrook also goes crazy at times and jacks up boneheaded shots, KD is the superstar of the team. Westbrook did a good job in the Finals except for Game 2, he went 10-26 from the field with 27 points, while Harden had 21 points on 7-11 shooting and KD had 32 points shooting 12-22, if KD and Harden scored more OKC would have won.

  57. Fefe (Nets) says:

    People: don’t forget that Russell, Kevin, Serge and James have not reached their prime yet. They have like 3/4 years of development ahead of them, before reaching their prime. And you already saw them in the NBA Finals. This team is “scary” and even if the Lakers have 6 current or former All-Stars now (Kobe, Pau, Nash, Howard, Jamison, Artest aka World Peace..not) they are all but Howard, really past their primes.
    And don’t forget that they have maybe one of the biggest steal of the draft: Perry Jones III.

    They can win a playoffs series against the Lakers, I’m certain about it: they have the potential and talent to do it! Now we’ll just have to see if their collective force and individual talents can translate in a new NBA Finals trip this upcoming year or very soon.

  58. Mike says:

    for me,Tyson Chanlder fits in their roster. they really dont need a big man who can score. only rebounds and defense. if Chanlder really got traded a couple of years ago to OKC, they had definitely beat the heat last finals.

    • RgR says:

      Do you know how much chandler is making ? think they could afford him now after trying to resign these 2 ?

      • lakers fan says:

        i agree because tyson chandler is now worth as much money as durant and westbrook but if they got him about 2 or 3 years ago maybe but if they had enough money to get him he would fit in very well

    • Krespino says:

      Tyson Chandler is wasted in the Knicks team. He will never play NBA finals with the Knicks. The OKC has made the wrong choice making the investment for the center position on Kendrick Perkins. I expected Perkins to be tough and even dirty to stop LeBron and friends, but Perkins failed when he was most needed.

      • Bubba chub says:

        Perkins has brought misfortune look at the celtics when Perkins was injured in 2010, the celtics failed big time. They should get rid of him.

  59. nba fan says:

    OKC has to hope that james harden would re-sign and take less money long term if they extend Ibaka’s contact

  60. Janice says:

    Harden feels this way. Why couldn’t Durant and Westbrook take less so Harden could be paid also. Did they think of him as a brother. NO!!! Tim Duncan did it. He took less so Parker and Ginobi could be paid. Love should be the same all around.

    • Love the hangtime podcast says:

      My sentiments exactly.

      I hope if Harden does take a reduced contract with OKC that his ‘brothers’ make sure he’s very well taken care of come birthdays and christmas.

  61. no one says:

    i bet “lbj” will comment on JH to go to MH. >_>

  62. la la land says:

    If they lose Harden, they will be a different team

  63. Ted says:

    Respect to Harden. I hope he does not become one of those guys who are blinded by money. Some things cannot be bought by money. And that includes a championship and a legacy.

  64. Krespino says:

    The OKC roster seems almost perfect with Durant, Westbrook, Ibaka, and Harden, Perkins, Sefolosha. But is it really perfect?
    They clearly could not cope with the Heat,
    And unless the OKC make some vital corrections they may not be able to win a championship in the next 5 -6 years.
    Where is the weakness? Is it Harden, is it the playing style of Westbrook, is it K.Perkins?
    My view is, Kendrick Perkins does not give championship level center production. His limitations in offensive game is well known, but in the Heat series he could not yield the needed defensive contribution either.
    Also I don’t belive Harden is max contract player.

    • go heat says:

      agreed. and with howard in LA the need for a dominant big man is more glaring than ever

      • TKt says:

        I dont mean to be a downer. But in my opinion, the just came up against a very overpowering HEAT team. KP has a championship ring. He shouldnt need much of an offense with KD and RW and Jimmy on his team. Im a HEAT fan, and I wish OKC the best. Very entertaining team to watch

    • Bubba chub says:

      Don’t forget their bench players like Perry Jones the III Hardenand Collison who can still rebound along with Eric Maynor.

  65. Vayne says:

    OKC have done it right… great scouting, great loyalty, great players = a great team for the next half decade!

  66. WOW! Nice! I hope Ibaka and Harden Can help thunder get another championship run…but then again…they will not win against the lakers hahaha

    • Amitpal says:

      Not win against the lakers? They have the best chance to beat the lakers. They have two great post defenders. They have thebo and russell to guard Kobe and Nash, thebo does a pretty good job on Kobe, and there stilll isn’t a single player on that team that can even come close to guarding Russell Westbrook. They match really well with the lakers. And with kd knowing how it feels to lose I the finals he’s going to come back better then ever.

      • Nash2Kobe says:

        Nobody needs to guard Westbrook, they can just let him drive straight into SUPERMAN now baby! Besides nobody in the league can guard that dude. Thebo is a good defender but Kobe is a great scorer and will always get his. Pau Gasol will get his as well, he carried Spain in the Olympics. What will Perkins, Ibaka, or Collison get against Superman, Gasol,and Hill? Not much! Hope OKC is ready to try to win a series against the Lakers with jump shots! And don’t forget about Jamison and Meeks! Lakes are loaded and ready to go!

      • QuestionMark says:

        Agreed, I think Durant will win the MVP this season, he has a chip on his shoulder and has something to prove after losing to the Heat, as for OKC vs the Lakers, much like how KG and Perkins made Howard struggle, I think Ibaka, the best shot blocker in the league, and Perkins can do the same, only big difference the Lakers have now are Nash and Jamison, Howard and Bynum are practically the same, their bench is the same except for Meeks and Jamison. Only real problem here I see is Jamison because he can keep Ibaka out of the paint since he can shoot 3s. Howard can be defended same as Bynum, not much difference there, Nash can be a problem but Westbrook is stronger and quicker than him, Thabo on Kobe will be the same, lets if Kobe’s age affects him at this point, Gasol is the same and of course as usual KD is unguardable. If OKC does lose, its on them, only problem I have with OKC is that Westbrook takes too many shots and KD disappears from the offense at times because of that.

      • atatna says:

        loading your team with a bunch of superstars doesn’t guarantee a championship. there has to be sacrifices and good teamwork among players. The coach will also play a big role especially in controlling his superstars. exciting season though can’t wait….

      • Bubba chub says:

        Maybe OKC will, but D12 may be questionable since he had a back surgery so he might never be himself again. Just saying but A.J would be a good backup if that happens Nash can’t play one on one d kB’s a ball-hog Gasol is aging so the Thunder does have a fair chance against them.

      • Nash2Kobe says:

        Howard and Bynum are not the same. Bynum is better on offense but on defense he only plays when he wants to. Howard is a 3 time Defensive player of the year! Bynum has had only one good season! Jamison, Hill, and Meeks are a huge upgrade over last years bench. Other than Harden who is on the Thunder bench? Boston got a championship after there big therees first year together and the Heat were only 2 wins away there first year. The Lakers in 2004 got to the finals with a washed up GP and injured Malone. Howard had back surgery and Kobe/Nash are old are the only arguments OKC fans have. Cmon now! Durant wont even comment about the Howard trade cause hes so pissed! Keep talkin about old age and injurys cause thats all OKC has to hope for this year baby! The OKC coach sat Ibaka the whole fourth quarter of the finals so its not like OKC has Phil Jackson!

  67. Rhedz says:

    They should keep their starting 5 if they want to keep up with the flow…Durant, westbrook, ibaka, sefolosha and harden..perkins getting older so you can’t really rely on him on long term basis.