It’s worth remembering that no key player in the Thunder rotation other than Kendrick Perkins was over the age of 22 in the last playoffs. This is a young team that remains all about the future.
So it is without a surprise that the Thunder exercised the options on a number of their young players Tuesday — James Harden, Serge Ibaka, Eric Maynor, Byron Mullens and Cole Aldrich. That via a tweet from Royce Young over at Daily Thunder.
That keeps all these guys with the team for at least another year. The Thunder likely will work out some kind of longer-term deal with Harden and Ibaka, once everyone sees the new Collective Bargaining Agreement. They are playing key roles for the team going forward.
Not all of these guys may stick — with the Thunder drafting Reggie Jackson out of Boston College they may look to trade Maynor. But you pick up his option anyway so you can trade him down the line. Basically this was a no-brainer decision and the Thunder front office has a lot of brains, so it was an easy call.