OKLAHOMA CITY -- The NBA season is almost certainly going to begin Saturday, and Thunder general manger Sam Presti held his first media availability of the season. With the truncated schedule, the season would begin just 16 days after players report; many would be concerned with a lack of preparation by the club.
Some have thought the benefit would come to teams on either end of the age spectrum, but Presti believes when it comes down to it, a team will still prepare in the same away.
"I think the schedule is the schedule, everybody has to play the same amount of games," Presti said. "It's going to be up to each team to prepare themselves on a day-to-day basis."
Presti was pleased with how his players handled the long layoff, coming back in shape and nearly ready for the season.
"We have a group of guys that we were confident going into the summer that were committed to improve and get better," Presti said. "By the look of the group as a whole, it's a testament to their commitment level."
Forward Kevin Durant turned to a few unorthodox activities during the lockout-extended offseason, some of which may have put him at risk for an injury. However, Presti wasn't concerned given the star's commitment to the team.
"One thing we know about Kevin is that he's an active guy. He's going to play," Presti said. "I have total confidence in him that the No. 1 priority for him is to always be ready to perform at the highest level. Knowing him, he wouldn't do anything to jeopardize that."
The Thunder will open up the 2011-2012 season on Christmas Day with a matchup against the Orlando Magic.