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2012-13 GM survey results: what do GM's think about the Thunder?

The league's GM's overwhelmingly choose LeBron and the Heat to take the crown again. What does that mean for the Thunder?

Howard Smith-US PRESSWIRE

At the beginning of each season, a GM survey is conducted to find how some of the ultimate insiders feel about how the season is going to go down. The 2012-13 season's survey is now public and here are the results:

2012-13 GM Survey | NBA.com

What do the league's GM's think of the Thunder? Here is a brief synopsis of the Thunder-specific results:

  • OKC is now a distant 3rd to win the championship this season.
  • A season after stomping the Lakers in the playoffs, OKC now does not even enjoy 50-50 odds of beating them again.
  • Last season, Kevin Durant was picked by most to win league MVP. The GM's got those odds straightened out this season, but KD is still fairly represented.
  • There are still a few GM's who believe Durant is the best cornerstone player in the league and forces other teams to adjust to him.
  • Durant trails LeBron James as the best small forward in the league, but interestingly Durant also got some votes as the top shooting guard, while LeBron was voted as the 3rd best power forward.
  • Serge Ibaka, 2012's Defensive player runner-up, is considered the 3rd best defender behind Dwight Howard and LeBron.
  • Respectully, Thabo Sefolosha also got some defensive player votes as one of the best perimeter defenders in the NBA.
  • Double surprise - George Karl was said to run the best offense in the NBA, ahead of Gregg Popovich, and Scott Brooks came in 3rd. I guess having a bunch of all-stars has its side benefits.
  • Mo Cheeks received votes for acting as one of the best assistant coaches.
  • OKC is by far the most fun team to watch, and they have the biggest home court advantage in the league.
  • Russell Westbrook earns some accolades. He was considered the 2nd most athletic player in the game and the 2nd best open court player behind LeBron (an argument we have long made here), is the fastest player with the ball in his hands.
  • Durant only trails Ray Allen as the best pure shooter in the game. Comically, Durant trails only Kobe Bryant in terms of being the best at getting his own shot. I guess when you shoot as much as Kobe does, 2nd place is right where you want to be.
  • Lastly, Kobe can take all the shots he wants, but Durant is still the best closer in the game.
I am going to close out this polling summary by saying that there's also a 5% chance that some GM's (Pop, ahem) may have voted for one purple and gold player simply to help him keep believing that he should take every shot during crunch time, a strategy that is not without merit.