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Thunder GM Sam Presti ready for new season

Thunder general manager Sam Presti held his pre-training camp news conference Friday, and while he called praise of the team "nice" and "humbling," he isn't ready to predict a win total or declare his club a top-five team in the NBA.
by Darnell Mayberry Modified: September 24, 2010 at 9:56 pm •  Published: September 24, 2010

Presti stopped short of labeling this year's team a top-five caliber team as many pundits see it. But he called this summer's flattery over the franchise "nice" and "humbling."

"By the same token, I don't think anyone in our building expects that any of those things are going to translate into production on the court," Presti said. "It's really up to us to stay focused and disciplined to our core principles."

And Presti maintains that the team's philosophy has not changed or wavered in the least. The focus again will be on building a sound defensive team that plays hard and collectively every night while striving to become a team that sustains success in the Western Conference.

Presti, as he has in years past, declined to predict a win total for this season or limit in any way what the Thunder could accomplish. But the GM sounded cautiously optimistic entering this season given last year's breaks that included extremely good health and a few other teams' misfortune.

"We had a lot of things go our way last year; I think everyone can see that," Presti said. "We also enjoyed some real big strides developmentally with some of our guys. With all that being said, we were still the eighth seed in the Western Conference.

"So overall, I think that lends itself to the overall understanding and humility of the group that we still have a long way to go given a lot of the things that fell in line for us last year."

by Darnell Mayberry
OKC Thunder Senior Reporter
Darnell Mayberry grew up in Langston, Okla. and is now in his third stint in the Sooner state. After a year and a half at Bishop McGuinness High, he finished his prep years in Falls Church, Va., before graduating from Norfolk State University in...
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