So you can almost always count on Sam Presti making moves during the Summer. From James Harden to Thabo Sefolosha, this is always an active part of the year for the Thunder and today is no different as the Oklahoma City Thunder have acquired PF/C Joffrey Lauvergne from the Denver Nuggets. Here are the details of the trade that went down today.
Denver has traded forward Joffrey Lauvergne to Oklahoma City for two future second-round picks, league sources tell @TheVertical.
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) August 30, 2016
So who is Joffrey Lauvergne?
He is a 24 year PF/C from Mulhouse, France. He was the 55th pick in the 2013 NBA draft by the Denver Nuggets. He averaged 7.9 points and 4.9 rebounds per game for the Nuggets last year, in spite of sharing minutes in an incredibly crowded front court that featured Jusif Nurkic, Nikola Jokic, and Kenneth Faried. Lauvergne is also a restricted free agent after next season, meaning OKC can retain him past this year.
While Lauvergne has struggled from the perimeter (just hitting 24.5% of his 3 point shots), there is some real hope for his future improvement from the perimeter as he made 89.9% of his FTs.
Lauvergne’s real value will come in the area of being an athletic back up to Steven Adams. He possesses good mobility and positional versatility for the Thunder. Basically, I wouldn’t be afraid to play him against a smaller lineup.
Also he can do this
Joffrey Lauvergne recently made waves in the Olympics. Dropped 12 pts & 5 reb against USA. This dunk in KD's face… pic.twitter.com/siEwha4M4W
— Up The Thunder (@UpTheThunder) August 30, 2016
This trade also has a couple of interesting subplots.
- The Thunder have 16 guaranteed contracts now, which means at least one player will not be not this team next season. As far as who that player is, our speculation is that Mitch McGary better be putting his house on the market if he has one in Oklahoma City.
- The Thunder can also move additional pieces to address the gaping hole at small forward. Here are several scenarios that could bolster that position for the Thunder
- Kings Receive Ersan Ilyasova, Mitch McGary, and Kyle Singler. The Thunder Receive Rudy Gay and Ben McLemore
- The Jazz Receive Ersan Ilyasova, Mitch McGary (and possibly something like rights to Semaj Christon). The Thunder receive Alec Burks
- The Rockets Receive Ersan Ilyasova and Mitch McGary. The Thunder Receive Trevor Ariza.
- Does this mean OKC might consider trading Kanter?
- I doubt it, but it’s definitely more on the table now than it was before.
The simply move is just to move McGary for rights to a Euro or a future second round pick. While that might inevitably be the final result of acquiring Joffrey, I believe the Thunder will go for more.