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Nerlens Noel says GM Sam Presti is ‘beyond special’

Nerlens Noel

Nerlens Noel, the newest member of the Oklahoma City Thunder, had nothing but praise for its general manager Sam Presti.

Per Gary Washburn of the Boston Globe, Noel has great trust in the organization, noting that Presti is ‘beyond special’:

Noel, the sixth overall pick in 2013, agreed to a two-year deal with the Thunder. Though the amount has not been disclosed, sources say that the contract involves a player option in the second year.

In five years as a pro, Noel has played for the Philadelphia 76ers and the Dallas Mavericks. The 24-year-old infamously declined a $70-million, four-year offer from the Mavericks back in 2017.

He’s moving on from that chapter in his life. With the Thunder, Nerlens Noel expressed his excitement of finally playing with a team which can complement his talents and playstyle. Per Nick Gallo of nba.com, Noel said:

This is something I’ve been really wanting my whole life, just to be on a talented team that can really complement my skill set and really show what I’m really about and go out on the court and play my game with no hesitation. Coach Billy has given me the utmost confidence since I’ve been talking to him day by day. Just go out there and play your game. There’s nothing in it besides basketball and just being yourself. I felt really accepted.

Back in 2008, a year into the job, Sam Presti was pretty much clear on how he intends to inject a specific culture in the organization.

“We want to develop a culture that there’s an Oklahoma City way of doing things,” Presti told The Oklahoman on Aug. 14, 2008. “That can represent everything we do. It can be from the way we defend the pick-and-roll, to how we share the ball, to how we treat our players, to how we treat our fans, to how we travel. Everything we do.”