OKC May Move Up in Draft; Eyeing Beal?
The chances of a playoff team getting (Bradley) Beal are slim, but Finals runner-up Oklahoma City has invested quality time figuring out a way to get up high enough to land Beal.
Beal told ESPN.com Wednesday that Oklahoma City general manager Sam Presti told him during an interview in Chicago that he was interested in trying to move up to draft him. The Thunder’s first-round pick isn’t until No. 28.
“He told me he was going to decide what they’re going to do and considered getting up there,” Beal said.
To get Beal, the Thunder would undoubtedly have to move James Harden, the NBA’s Sixth Man of the Year. League sources said the Thunder wouldn’t be able to avoid serious tax issues if they had to pay lucrative contracts to all four of their marquee players in Kevin Durant, Russell Westbrook, Serge Ibaka and Harden. The first two won’t be moved. But to trade Harden to a team such as Charlotte would be a risk for the receiving team since there is no guarantee Harden would sign a long-term deal beyond the one year remaining on his contract. Also, the Thunder would be disrupting a team that was three wins away from winning an NBA title.