For the last few years, most believed the Oklahoma City Thunder would part ways with center Kendrick Perkins. Instead, he has remained the team’s starting center and is entering the final year of his contract, which will pay him $9,404,342.
In each of the last two year, the Thunder have drafted a big man, taking Steven Adams in 2013 and Mitch McGary back in June, which has only added to speculation that Perkins is being phased out.
Steve Kyler of Hoops Rumors believes Adams, not Perkins or McGary, will man the starting center spot.
I think OKC has proven historically that Rookies don’t play a big role. I know they liked Mitch a lot in Summer League, but I think the starter’s spot is going to Steven Adams.
From there I think you’ll see Perk and Mitch get minutes, but I would lower the bar on what you think Mitch does as a rookie, the Thunder haven’t used rookies heavily.
I would agree you’ll see time sharing, and a lot of balance at the position because of the way the Thunder want to play in the paint – physicality and deny the rim.
Perkins put up 3.4 points, 4.9 rebounds and 1.1 assists while shooting 45.1% from the field and 55.2% from the charity stripe last season. Adams averaged 3.3 points, 4.1 rebounds and 0.7 blocks in just 14.8 minutes per game while shooting 50.3% from the floor and 58.1% from the free throw line. McGary went for 9.5 points, 8.3 rebounds, 1.9 steals and 1.5 assists per game while shooting 54.5% from the field and 66.7% from the charity stripe with the Michigan Wolverines last season.
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