Sam Presti is deserving of a lifetime contract as general manager of the Thunder, according to one NBA scout.

The scout credited Presti for having the foresight to select James Harden third in the 2009 draft.

“Sam Presti [VP/GM] had a lot of faith in his conviction to draft him that high [No. 3]. We all had him going No. 7, definitely not one slot ahead of Tyreke Evans.

“You and I could’ve picked Durant after the Blazers took Greg Oden No. 1,” Scout said. “Westbrook [No. 4 coming off sophomore UCLA averages of 12.7 points and 3.9 assists] and Harden were pure genius.

“Presti has earned a lifetime deal from Oklahoma City.”

Harden was voted sixth man of the year after leading all bench players in scoring this season.

“The kid is three years in the NBA and he plays like an 8-year-pro. His demeanor reminds me of Tim Duncan. He makes tough shots, takes a tough head shot, makes a great pass and commits a lousy turnover, and his expression never changes. I can’t give him higher praise.

“I’ll take Harden and Serge [Ibaka] and take my chances with six D-Leaguers.”