If you aren’t aware, reports have surfaced stating that Jimmy Butler might quite possibly be moved by the Chicago Bulls. While adding Butler to this Thunder team would be simply incredible (and very costly…think Sabonis, Oladipo, and Roberson), I would guess that this scenario is completely unlikely*.
There is however another Bulls player that I would think would be a natural fit for the Thunder, and they should ZERO in on him. That player is Doug McDermott. McDermott is in his third year in the NBA, and has been an incredibly effective shooter (40.4% from 3). His points per game has increased from 3.0 points a game in his rookie campaign, to a career best 10.1 this season. He doesn’t start for the Bulls, but anchors their second unit while averaging 26.3 points per game.
McDermott is not known as a great defender by any stretch (although is Defensive Plus/Minus has improved in each of his 3 seasons), but that is not the reason that the Thunder should look to acquire him. This Thunder team would thrive with another player that can be a knock down shooter, to help lessen the scoring burden on Russell Westbrook. I can easily imagine scenarios with the second unit where the ball is thrown into Kanter in the post. Currently the Thunder have a nice two-man game between Kanter and Abrines (as Kanter is doubled, he kicks to Abrines for an open 3 point shot). Adding a player like McDermott would given him a second passing option out of double teams.
Further McDermott is big enough 6-8/225 to play some small ball power forward. He is an excellent catch and shoot 3 point shooter (41.3 %) and 45.3% on all catch and shoot shots. So the question is what would an offer between the Thunder and Bulls looks like for McDermott. Here is the trade that I believe works best for both teams.
The Bulls have nothing at point guard that will really move the needle (I think Jerian Grant can be a player, but he still hasn’t shown much, even though his opportunities have been sporadic at best). Giving them Cameron Payne gives them a player they can build around. He would likely step into the Bulls starting lineup as soon as he is healthy. You might even get the Bulls to take back a contract of someone like Kyle Singler.
So am I crazy?
*Although if you could work a trade for Butler, Jerian Grant, and Bobby Portis for Sabonis, Roberson, and Oladipo, I would pull the trigger on that in a heartbeat.