The Oklahoma City Thunder franchise is being ravaged by injuries right now. After former MVP Kevin Durant missed the majority of last season, not to mention fellow superstar Russell Westbrook, who single-handedly carried the team on most nights, missing a good amount of time now as well, the Thunder now have endured an injury to to their first-round draft pick Cameron Payne. The Murray State product sustained a fractured finger and is now sitting out of the Orlando Summer League.
The league, which started on July 4 and runs through July 10, is hosted by Orlando, who suits up two teams, Blue and White, along with the Los Angeles Clippers, Memphis Grizzlies, Miami Heat, Charlotte Hornets, Brooklyn Nets, Indiana Pacers and Detroit Pistons.
The Thunder’s second-round pick from Kentucky, Dakari Johnson has been the best rebounder for the team during summer league action, which is exactly what the Thunder brass expected when selecting him 48th-overall. The Thunder are 2-1 in their three games, defeating the Hornets by two points in the opener on the Fourth of July and the Orlando Blue team by eight points two days later, before getting blown out by 17 to the Clippers on July 7. Their final game in the Orlando Summer League is on July 9 when they go up against the Grizzlies.
Hipmunk.com can get Thunder fans in front of summer league action with their flights to Orlando that are provided from most major airline carriers. A basketball destination vacation is a few clicks away with Hipmunk, as they also provide the ability to reserve hotels in Orlando starting at $55 a night.
New head coach Billy Donovan has been seen with Durant watching the team participate in summer league action. There’s a certain aura around the Thunder this season, as it may be the last with both Durant and Russell Westbrook, as Durant’s free agency looms large in 2016. Oklahoma City Thunder tickets may be more available than usual if Durant departs for greener pastures.
Payne’s fracture was clean and did not require surgery, and occurred during a workout for the NBA Draft. It did not hinder his draft stock whatsoever, but Thunder fans will have to wait before seeing the 14th-overall pick on the hardwood.
Other Thunder players on the summer roster are Semaj Christon, Frank Gaines, Mitch McGary, Levi Randolph, Talib Zanna, Quinn Cook, Tekele Cotton and others.