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NBA Trade Rumors: 3 Players OKC Thunder could move ahead of the deadline

The Thunder are currently focused on growing their young core [Image: NBA.com]
The Thunder are currently focused on growing their young core [Image: NBA.com]
Raunak J
ANALYST
Modified 27 Jan 2021
Top 5 / Top 10

The OKC Thunder acted accordingly to the prevalent NBA trade rumors and moved their key stars at the start of the 2020-21 season to begin their rebuild. They've acquired several young players and draft stock in the process.

Despite all the shuffling, the OKC Thunder roster isn't as bad as many would expect. They're performing much better than franchises with multiple recognized stars among their ranks. As such, this may deter OKC from landing a high pick in the 2021 draft and the front office may be forced to make some moves.

NBA Trade Rumors: OKC Thunder could move the remaining veterans on the team

OKC Thunder still have several recognized veterans on their books who could play a crucial role on contending teams. They don't really form a part of the team's future plans and Sam Presti would be better off swapping them for more picks or cap relief.

On that note, let us look at three players that OKC Thunder could move ahead of the NBA trade deadline.


#1 George Hill

George Hill (left)
George Hill (left)

George Hill is likely to be OKC Thunder's most in-demand player ahead of the NBA trade deadline. Hill is a solid 3-and-D player who's averaging 11.8 points on 50.8% shooting including a 38.6% clip from downtown. With over 12 years of league experience, Hill brings leadership to the table as well.

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George Hill is owed a team-friendly $9.6 million salary this year with roughly $1.3 million guaranteed for the 2021-22 campaign. Any team in need of a vocal locker room presence and impact bench player could benefit from his services.

#2 Al Horford

Al Horford (middle)
Al Horford (middle)

OKC Thunder acquired Al Horford in a salary dump from the Philadelphia 76ers earlier this season but the veteran center has improved his stock since. Horford's numbers haven't seen an uptick from last year with him averaging 11.1 points and 7.1 rebounds this campaign. He's upped his game on the defensive end though.

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OKC Thunder won't find it easy to move Horford who still has three years and $81 million left on his current contract. However, he's still an able facilitator who makes his teammates better and can protect the basket. Perhaps OKC could attach a pick to entice a playoff contender into trading for the 34-year-old.

#3 Trevor Ariza

Trevor Ariza
Trevor Ariza

After being traded several times this offseason, Trevor Ariza found himself on the rebuilding OKC Thunder. Ariza is yet to suit up for the franchise and continues to remain away from the team due to personal reasons. He skipped the bubble leg of last season due to the same.

Another 3-and-D expert, Trevor Ariza is on an expiring contract and owed $12.8 million this term. His game has waned of late but he had an impressive run after getting traded to the Portland Trail Blazers last season, where he averaged 11 points on 49.1% shooting.

OKC Thunder can always waive Ariza if he doesn't get past his current troubles but they're better off waiting for a trade candidate to emerge.


Also read: NBA Trade Rumors - 3 Big men Brooklyn Nets can target with their Disabled Player Exception


Published 27 Jan 2021, 21:33 IST
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