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Loud Links: June 11, 2009


Loud Links are back. I hope you are having a thunderous Thursday. ESPN ranks the Thunder the 12th best franchise in the history of the NBA. If you want to see how we rank against the Cavs, Magic, Spurs and company, you should check out the article. The Thunder are selling season tickets tomorrow at the Coca-Cola Event Center. I received an invitation earlier this week that promised a preview of Ford Center renovations among other things. I’ll share any worthwhile details with you guys of course. Happy reading!

THUNDER: Limited Amount of New Season Tickets on Sale Beginning Friday
The Oklahoma City Thunder announced today that the general public will have an opportunity to select seats and purchase season tickets for the 2009-10 season on Friday, June 12 at the Coca-Cola Bricktown Events Center from 2 p.m. to 7 p.m. The limited number of available season tickets to be offered beginning Friday, will include seats in a variety of locations and price levels.

Despite economy, Oklahoma City Thunder season ticket sales strong |
The Oklahoma City Thunder expect about five out of every six season ticket-holders to renew their seats for the team's second season. Senior vice president of ticket sales and service Brian Byrnes say Wednesday the team is thrilled with the renewal rate of about 83 percent, considering the state of the economy.

NBA Franchise Rankings: Oklahoma City Thunder No. 12 - ESPN Insider
In the 41 seasons from 1968-69 to 2008-09, only four teams have won more regular-season games than the Sonics/Thunder franchise. It doesn't seem that way, does it? The Sonics unfortunately weren't able to leverage much of that regular-season success in the playoffs; the emblematic moment of their failure was Dikembe Mutombo's celebrating on their floor after the Nuggets stunned the top-seeded Sonics in the 1994 playoffs.

Ex-Sun Devils shooter wants to impress Kings with versatility | Sacramento Bee
"I'm a basketball player," Harden said. "I think the GMs and the coaches know I don't have one set position. They know I can score the ball. They know I can handle the ball as well. I don't have a set position."

TIMBERWOLVES: Draft 2K9 - Hasheem Thabeet
The draft has not seen a pure defensive threat since 1991 with Dikembe Mutombo. The 7-3 center patrolled the paint for the Huskies and vaulted to the top of draft rankings by averaging 4.2 blocked shots per game last year. Thabeet quickly developed his game on the defensive side of the floor under the tutelage of Connecticut head coach Jim Calhoun. Similar to most great shot-blocking players in the NBA, Thabeet has excellent timing and always finds a way to disrupt shots from the weak side. For his lengthy body, Thabeet can run the floor with ease. The Tanzanian product is not exactly polished offensively but he does finish around the basket.

Moments before Stephen Curry walked in to meet the media Wednesday afternoon after his predraft workout at the Knicks' training facility, coach Mike D'Antoni told him New York couldn't draft him. "I said, Oh, why?'" Curry said. "He said, 'Because Allan Houston said he doesn't want to be the second-best shooter in Knicks' history.'"

NBA Draft ‘09 Stock Watch: Patrick Mills | Dime Magazine ( : Daily NBA News, NBA Trades, NBA Rumors, Basketball Videos, Sneakers
Here’s what I don’t get: While you can’t make it five minutes into a Ricky Rubio argument without somebody supporting his case with the concept that he "held his own" against grown men overseas and against Team USA in the Olympics, Patrick Mills gets zero credit for not just holding his own, but putting in serious work against the Redeem Team and other international juggernauts.

DraftExpress: Reebok Eurocamp Summary, Part One
With the 2009 Reebok Eurocamp in the books, we look back and empty our scouting notebooks from a great weekend in Treviso, Italy. The Eurocamp continues to progress from year to year and has become a must-see event for NBA and European teams alike.

Scouts: OKC should take Thabeet | NBA in OKC
If Hasheem Thabeet is available when the Thunder picks No. 3 in the upcoming NBA Draft, it’s a no-brainer for Oklahoma City general manager Sam Presti to select the UConn 7-foot-3 center, according to a couple of NBA scouts. Thabeet’s offensive game is limited. His basketball IQ has come into question. But two scouts said what he brings to the defensive end with his shot blocking and rebounding more than warrant selecting him No. 3 if the Grizzlies don’t select Thabeet.

2009 Reebok Eurocamp: Top 10 Prospects |
Jonas Jerebko 6'9'' SF Sweden 1987 - Even though he only ended up playing one game, it was enough for Jerebko to showcase the majority of his strengths as well as some weaknesses. His outside shot was working and he was able to step out to the NBA three and easily knock down a couple from deep. He showed his athleticism on a backdoor cut where he finished with a nice dunk over a big help side defender. His strength is also a key ingredient to his game as he is able to battle with bigger players inside and can also do some damage with his back to the basket.

Top 10 Free Agent Point Guards for 2009 -
Eddie House, Boston Celtics (unrestricted) - Very one-dimensoinal, but always manages to find ways to put points on the board.

Top 10 Free Agent Shooting Guards for 2009 -
Dahntay Jones, Denver Nuggets (unrestricted) - Provides defense and athleticism on the wing. He's also good at tripping Kobe Bryant. Besides the Lakers, what team wouldn't want that? He doesn't have much of an offensive skill set, though, averaging just 5.4 PPG.

Top 10 Free Agent Small Forwards for 2009 -
Hedo Turkoglu, Orlando Magic (unrestricted) - Haven't heard whether or not he plans to opt out. Returned to earth a bit after a breakout 07-08 campaign, but came up huge in the coference finals against the Cavs. He's known for his ability to spread the floor with his guard-like skills. If he decides not to opt out, he'll make $7.35 million next year with the Magic

Top 10 Free Agent Power Forwards for 2009 -
Shawn Marion, Toronto Raptors (unrestricted) - He gets this spot over Boozer due to the fact that you know what you're getting from him: a multi-talented combo-forward who excels in the fast break. He picked up his scoring after being traded to Toronto and couls still be good for 15 and 9 in the right situation.



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