While the Thunder now clearly have their eyes set on the future, a closer look reveals that their current rosters isn’t as bad as it’s made out to be. It’s certainly true that Chris Paul is on a bad contract and is getting up there in terms of age, but he can still play and definitely remains one of the top point guard options in the league. It will be interesting to see how he responds now that he will be the one running the show again and no longer has to defer to Harden. Paul and center Steven Adams should be a force in the pick-and-roll, as the duo has the potential to replicate or perhaps even improve on the production that Adams and Westbrook have had for the past several years.
In addition to all of the draft picks that OKC got in exchange for Paul George, it is easy to forget that they also received Shai Gilgeous-Alexander and Danilo Gallinari in the deal as well. Gilgeous-Alexander had a very impressive rookie campaign as the starting point guard for the Clippers last year, and now he will look to learn from Chris Paul in an effort to develop into potentially the point guard of the future for the Thunder. Gallinari has battled injuries throughout his career, as he actually hasn’t played in more 70 games in a season since 2010. However, the Italian had a resurgent season last year in Los Angeles averaging a career high 19.8 points per game and in the process reminding everyone of the scoring potential he has in his arsenal.
In terms of the rest of the roster, look for the Thunder to use minutes to evaluate the remaining young talent on their roster in order to see who they should have stick around for the future. With that being the case, there doesn’t appear to be a clear role for Dennis Schroeder at the moment. While he certainly has his flaws, he can definitely provide backcourt depth to a contender that’s in need of it, so it wouldn’t be shocking if the Thunder try to get off of his contract sooner rather than later.