Eight Games Between Two Cities
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The Oklahoma City Thunder will play in two separate summer leagues over the next two weeks, starting in Salt Lake City. From there, the team will head to Las Vegas for the larger of the two events.

Oklahoma City’s roster is loaded with young talent and should be one of the top teams at both summer league events. It’s got a great variety of contributors from last season as well as fresh faces from the rookie class. Additionally, there’s a handful of players that will be looking to earn a spot with the Thunder’s G League affiliate, the OKC Blue.

It’s still unclear exactly how much each of these prospects will play and which events they’ll see the floor most. The rotations and minutes could look drastically different not only between the two events, but also on a night-by-night basis.

Regardless, all eyes will be on the No. 2 overall pick in the 2022 NBA Draft, Chet Holmgren. He’ll be accompanied by the Thunder’s other two lottery picks in Jalen Williams and Ousmane Dieng.

From last season’s Thunder squad, Aleksej Pokusevski, Josh Giddey and Tre Mann should be among the best players on the court at all times.

The first event will take place in Utah, where four teams will go head-to-head during a three-day span. The Thunder will be in Salt Lake City with the Philadelphia 76ers, Utah Jazz and Memphis Grizzlies.

As such, Oklahoma City will take on each of these teams one time at Vivint Arena. It’s set up as a round-robin event where one team is crowned the winner on the final day.

  • Tuesday, July 5: Utah Jazz (8PM)
  • Wednesday, July 6: Memphis Grizzlies (6PM)
  • Thursday, July 7: Philadelphia 76ers (5PM)

After Oklahoma City’s game on Thursday against the Sixers, they’ll head to Las Vegas for the big event. This showcase will feature all 30 NBA teams and is one of the most highly anticipated events of the NBA offseason. The best young prospects across the league will be taking the court while current stars watch from the sidelines.

NBA Summer League in Las Vegas will actually start while the Thunder are wrapping up in Salt Lake City, but they don’t play their first game that event until Saturday. It will run from July 7-17 at the Thomas & Mack Center and Cox Pavilion.

Every team will play five total games in Las Vegas. They’ll each play four games to first determine who earns a spot in the championship game. After every team plays those four games, the two teams with the best records will meet in the Championship Game on July 17. The other 28 teams that don’t make the championship will play a fifth game on either July 16 or 17. Over this 11 day span, 75 total games will be played.

  • Saturday, July 9: Houston Rockets
  • Monday, July 11: Orlando Magic
  • Wednesday, July 13: Sacramento Kings
  • Friday, July 15: Golden State Warriors

After selecting second overall in last month’s draft, the Thunder’s first three games in Las Vegas will be against the other teams in the top four of the order. This means Holmgren will get to go up against Paolo Banchero (Orlando), Jabari Smith Jr. (Houston), and Keegan Murray (Sacramento).

This will be the first of many games between these top-level prospects as they each look to develop into the best player in their class.

The Thunder announced that Kameron Woods returns as the Thunder’s summer league head coach, after serving in the same position for Oklahoma City’s last three 2021 Summer League games. Oklahoma City Blue Head Coach Grant Gibbs and Thunder player development coaches, Eric Maynor and Zach Peterson, will serve as assistant coaches.

Oklahoma City legitimately has the talent on the roster to win both summer leagues. It will come down to how frequently the Thunder play their top prospects and how hard they push for wins. Considering it’s summer league, getting reps and developing chemistry is much more important than the final score.

“Any chance that a team has to play together is really valuable, at this stage of where the team is,” Thunder GM Sam Presti said recently. “It’s accumulated mileage together.”

Overall, this week will be the start of something potentially great for this young Thunder team.

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