The Golden State Warriors suffered a big blow for the 2020-21 season after Klay Thompson suffered another major injury that would keep him out for another season. Aware they need to act fast, the Dubs have acquired Kelly Oubre Jr. from the Oklahoma City Thunder.
The Warriors used the trade exception they had from the Andre Iguodala trade. This means that the Warriors do not need to send a player to the Thunder to acquire the 24-year-old player. However, Thunder general manager is likely to request for future picks instead, The Athletic reported.
OKC is in rebuilding mode but has been noticeably active in deals as of late. Previously dealt away were Chris Paul and Dennis Schroder. Paul is now with the Phoenix Suns, the same deal that allowed them to take in Oubre.
The Oklahoma City Thunder are in serious talks to move Kelly Oubre Jr. to the Golden State Warriors, sources tell @TheAthleticNBA @Stadium. — Shams Charania (@ShamsCharania) November 19, 2020
Schroder was acquired in a trade with the Los Angeles Lakers that included Danny Green. Ironically, Green was eventually dealt with the Philadelphia 76ers in exchange for Al Horford.
Oubre thus becomes the second player that OKC had acquired but did not see a single minute for the Thunder. More names are likely to be moved with the Thunder focusing on young players and future picks.
This hints that Horford could be the next man to be dealt out. If there are no takers for the 34-year-old center-forward, there is a possibility that OKC may buy him out or waive him. Some saw the trade more of as a salary dump with Horford carrying a questionable $81 million contract spread over the next three years.
The Dubs will absorb Oubre’s $14.4 million salary into their $17.2 million trade exception, ESPN reported. Pundits see it a good deal to make considering Oubre is still young and someone who can play well on both ends of the floor.
Oubre will be in the final year of his contract before becoming a free agent next NBA offseason. The understanding is that the 24-year-old will try to come out with a good performance for the 2020-21 season to entice interest from other teams for the 2021-22 season.
The Warriors could still be in play if Oubre flourishes under head coach Steve Kerr. Last season, the 15th overall pick of the 2015 NBA Draft played in 56 games for the Phoenix Suns averaging 18.7 points, 6.4 rebounds, and 1.5 assists.
Warriors general manager Bob Myers mentioned that Golden State may make more moves this offseason. He mentioned these after the Dubs made James Wiseman as the no. 2 picks of the 2020 NBA Draft.