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Presti 'anticipates' Billy Donovan returning for fifth season as Thunder coach

Billy Donovan is coming back.

Thunder general manager Sam Presti announced at a press conference on Monday that he "anticipates" Donovan will return for his fifth season as coach. The Thunder picked up the fifth-year option on Donovan’s contract in November.

“I wouldn’t expect anything to change," Presti said. "There’s nobody that works harder than him."

Donovan has a 199-120 record as Thunder coach, but is just 4-12 in the playoffs the last three seasons. Since Kevin Durant left in free agency in 2016, the Thunder has lost three consecutive first-round playoff series. The Thunder has improved by one win in each of the last three seasons.

But Presti supported Donovan and said the Thunder would continue to approach decisions with patience.

“Our job isn’t just to sit here and react to things. It’s to be methodical and understand how we can get better, what’s the plan for that," Presti said. "Last year, the team wasn’t good enough defensively and we put our heads together and became better.

"The margins of error are small. We’re not entitled to anything. We don’t come into the year expecting to be automatically be served up. But you’ve also go to perform when you get there.”

Related Photos
Oklahoma City head coach Billy Donovan talks with Jerami Grant (9) during Game 4 in the first round of the NBA playoffs between the Portland Trail Blazers and the Oklahoma City Thunder at Chesapeake Energy Arena in Oklahoma City, Sunday, April 21, 2019. Portland won 111-98. Photo by Sarah Phipps, The Oklahoman

Oklahoma City head coach Billy Donovan talks with Jerami Grant (9) during Game 4 in the first round of the NBA playoffs between the Portland Trail Blazers and the Oklahoma City Thunder at Chesapeake Energy Arena in Oklahoma City, Sunday, April 21, 2019. Portland won 111-98. Photo by Sarah Phipps,...

<figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-a24d1529a0d28f24de118c803df3b821.jpg" alt="Photo - Oklahoma City head coach Billy Donovan talks with Jerami Grant (9) during Game 4 in the first round of the NBA playoffs between the Portland Trail Blazers and the Oklahoma City Thunder at Chesapeake Energy Arena in Oklahoma City, Sunday, April 21, 2019. Portland won 111-98. Photo by Sarah Phipps, The Oklahoman" title="Oklahoma City head coach Billy Donovan talks with Jerami Grant (9) during Game 4 in the first round of the NBA playoffs between the Portland Trail Blazers and the Oklahoma City Thunder at Chesapeake Energy Arena in Oklahoma City, Sunday, April 21, 2019. Portland won 111-98. Photo by Sarah Phipps, The Oklahoman"><figcaption>Oklahoma City head coach Billy Donovan talks with Jerami Grant (9) during Game 4 in the first round of the NBA playoffs between the Portland Trail Blazers and the Oklahoma City Thunder at Chesapeake Energy Arena in Oklahoma City, Sunday, April 21, 2019. Portland won 111-98. Photo by Sarah Phipps, The Oklahoman</figcaption></figure>
Erik Horne

Erik Horne is in his fourth season on the Thunder beat. Horne joined The Oklahoman as a sports web editor/producer in September 2013 following a five-year stint at The Ardmoreite (Ardmore) – first as a sports writer, then sports editor. At The... Read more ›

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