It's about to be lockdown city in Oklahoma City! In a rather shocking turn of events, the Oklahoma City Thunder traded Josh Giddey to the Chicago Bulls for All-Defense guard Alex Caruso. It was a surprising move, but quite the pleasant surprise for the team. Caruso is a perfect fit in the new-look OKC squad focused on defense and spacing.

After the trade was made official, Alex Caruso's girlfriend, Haleigh Broucher, took to Instagram to share her thoughts. In an initial Instagram story, Broucher said that she was excited with the move to the Thunder, but that there were mixed emotions. (quotes taken from The Spun)

“”So so many emotions at once,” Broucher wrote. “So proud of this man and so excited for this next journey #thunderup.””

After the Lakers unceremoniously let Caruso go, the Bulls accepted the former NBA champion with open arms. Caruso became a hero in Chicago, embodying the hustle and the fighting spirit of the city. It makes sense that while the point guard is moving to an objectively better situation with the Thunder, Caruso and Broucher would feel some trepidation.

Broucher also thanked the Bulls organization in another story.

“I want to say how amazing the Bulls organization has been, how hard everyone works behind the scenes, and how grateful I am for all of the friends I've made along the way. I truly cherish each and every one of them and will miss them terribly. Excited for a new chapter and grateful for the old. Love you guys forever. And I'll see you on another court.”

Caruso's impact on Thunder

Chicago Bulls guard Alex Caruso (6) shoots the basketball over Miami Heat guard Delon Wright (4) in the first quarter during a play-in game of the 2024 NBA playoffs at Kaseya Center.
Sam Navarro-USA TODAY Sports

Caruso will bring a ton of positive impact on the Thunder next season. He will likely be replacing Giddey in the starting lineup next year. Caruso is capable of playing as the secondary ball-handler behind SGA, but his toolkit is so much more than just that.

Any discussions about Alex Caruso will inevitably lead to talking about his defense. He made a name for himself with the Lakers on defense, and that has not changed in all these years. He excels at defending the point-of-attack, but his smarts and quick reflexes make him a terror in the passing lanes as well. The Thunder's future opponents will have headaches with Shai Gilgeous-Alexander and Caruso in the backcourt and Chet Holmgren protecting the paint.

In addition, Caruso has developed a reliable three-point stroke as of late. He's always been an average shooter at worst. In the last two years, though, Caruso has been elite from deep, shooting around 38% from three in that period. Last season, he shot 40% from deep with a significant uptick in attempts. That will be a welcome improvement for the Thunder's starting lineup.

The Thunder shocked the NBA world last season by making a leap from one of the worst teams to the top seed in the West. They'll be looking to build off of that season in 2024. It certainly won't be easy: teams are surely gunning for them now. There's still more work to be done in the offseason. Look out.