Thunder tops ESPN poll
The Thunder is ranked No. 1 in ESPN’s future power ratings where Chad Ford and John Hollinger project on-court success for the upcoming three seasons, starting with the 2010-11 season through the 2012-13 season.
All 30 teams receive a future power rating of 0 to 1,000 based on points given in five categories — players, management, money, market and the draft.
ESPN wrote: “The Thunder have ascended to the top of the rankings thanks to the continued development of their young core, and yet another astute trade. This one filched rookie point guard Eric Maynor from Utah, basically for free, to fill a rotation spot where the Thunder had previously been sorely lacking. Up front, the emergence of shot-blocking forward Serge Ibaka adds another piece to their rapidly expanding talent base.
“The Thunder still has only two true stars — emerging MVP candidate and possible scoring champ Kevin Durant and his steadily improving sidekick Russell Westbrook. Fortunately, everything is in place for the Thunder to surround them with even more talent. General manager Sam Presti has preserved cap space and hoarded draft picks, allowing him to trade from a position of strength to build the roster going forward. The team draws so well that its small market status shouldn’t be an overwhelming concern.”
Oklahoma City finished with 692 points. The Thunder finished third in management, fourth in players, eighth in money, 12th in the draft and 21st in market.
The rest of the top 10 included: LA Lakers (686), Orlando (684), Miami (653), Portland (620), Utah (585), Denver (577), Cleveland (574), Chicago (573) and Houston (567).
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