Author - Chuck Chaney

57 days until preseason: Westbrook’s 57 points against Orlando

We’ll start a new thing today, keying on something every day until the Thunder’s first preseason game.

57

Man, the things Russell Westbrook has done to the Orlando Magic. From the 2015-16 season where he hit buzzer beaters and then during his solo year, Westbrook eviscerated the Magic all by himself en route to a 57-point triple-double and getting the win.

Fresh off a 14-point fourth quarter against the Mavericks just 48 hours before, Westbrook continually did it all again against Orlando. He probably shouldn’t have. He did though. Orlando led by as many as 21 in the second half as the Thunder seemed in disarray.

Then, Russell Westbrook happened.

Westbrook scored 29 points in the second half, 19 in the second half as the Thunder used a flurry of big threes from Russ in the fourth to mount the comeback. Westbrook would outscore the Magic 7-4 in the overtime session.

It’s really just the main theme of that season. The Thunder’s bench flailing away as the future MVP winner had to save the season once again.

None was more impressive than his fade away three with seven seconds left to tie the game. He did it with two guys in his vision and it still swished nothing but net.

“I didn’t know [it was going in],” Westbrook said. “I couldn’t see right away because two people jumped.”

It was Westbrook’s second 50-point triple-double this season. Before the 2016-17 season, a 50-point triple-double hadn’t been done since Kareem Abdul-Jabbar in 1975. Westbrook’s 57-point triple-double (57p-13r-11a), at the time, was the highest point triple-double. James Harden has since topped that.

“That is definitely a blessing,” Westbrook told reporters of his historic night in Orlando, Florida. “I definitely don’t take this game for granted, and I try to come out each night and try to compete at a high level. That is definitely something that is a blessing and definitely something that I can be proud of.”

Westbrook would go on and win the MVP and sealed our hearts.

We invite you to follow Thunder Digest on Twitter and like Thunder Digest on Facebook. Don't forget to subsribe on Youtube! Our Podcast is on iTunes and on Stitcher. We also have a Thunder Digest Instagram account if you love fun Thunder photography!

Thunder trade Carmelo Anthony to Hawks

There were some some rumblings yesterday but today it hit. The Oklahoma City Thunder have traded Carmelo Anthony to the Atlanta Hawks in a three-team traded that’s a bit wild but we’ll break it down for you.

Anthony had reportedly waived his no-trade clause so the Thunder could trade him, saving over $100M in luxury tax. There had been talks with a handful of teams. The Atlanta stuff came down yesterday. Atlanta’s main point was offloading Dennis Schroder. They want Trae Young to be their No. 1 guy.

So, Oklahoma City is sending Carmelo Anthony and all of his $27.9 million to Atlanta for Dennis Schroder and a lottery protected 2022 first round pick. Also, Atlanta is sending Mike Muscala to Philadelphis and the 76ers are sending Timothe Luwawu-Caborrot to the Thunder.

First and foremost, the Thunder will save a ton of money. Through all of the weeds, Oklahoma City is saving $62 million in luxuty tax alone. Their salary cap drops considerably. From $160 million to $148.7 million.

Secondly, the Thunder get a bench scoring guard they’ve desperately wanted since Reggie Jackson leaving. Victor Oladipo was going to be that guy but KD did his thing. So, he was forced to start. They like having the defensive two-guard who can start and use someone’s scoring ability off the bench to counter the bench inefficiencies.

Schroder will make $15.5 million over the next three seasons but there’s a huge upside with him. He’s been the main focal point on an offense the last two seasons and that often will see his numbers dip and they have. Schroder averaged 19.4 points and 6.2 assists per game on 43.6 percent shooting, including 29 percent from three last season. He also was the focal point of the offense last season. Compared to the higher efficiency the previous seasons.

Atlanta had just traded for Jeremy Lin and to keep quality point guards of in threes is rare and quite inefficient. Especially when all three are particularly big in ball dominance. There had been leaks since the acquisition of Jeremy Lin the Hawks were interested in shipping Schroder because of his contract out of Atlanta.

For Timothe Luwawu-Caborrot, aka TLC, averaged only 5.8 points per game. He’s a lanky wing who has a high potential. He’s like a shorter Jerami Grant. His per 36 numbers, if you want to stretch them out to projections, are 13.3 points per game and shooting almost 34 percent from three. His not an overly good defender his first two years in the NBA.

I don’t think Oklahoma City is going to waive either player. Schroder is tied in for the next three seasons. That would mean stretching $6.6 million for seven years. SEVEN. Luwawu is making $1.54 million this season and has a team option for next season the team can decline. So, he’s not going anywhere.

The Melo-Thunder saga is over. Both tried but it unfortunately never worked when Andre Roberson went down with an injury. Onto the next one as the Thunder are not holding back in trying to build a championship during Russell Westbrook’s prime.

We invite you to follow Thunder Digest on Twitter and like Thunder Digest on Facebook. Don't forget to subsribe on Youtube! Our Podcast is on iTunes and on Stitcher. We also have a Thunder Digest Instagram account if you love fun Thunder photography!

Thunder Summer League Round 1: Thunder vs. Memphis Grizzlies

First Round: Oklahoma City (2-1) vs. Grizzlies (1-2)

Thursday, July 12 :: 5:00 p.m. CST :: Cox Pavillion (2,454) :: Las Vegas, Nevada
TV Coverage: NBATV
Radio Coverage: n/a
View from the enemyHere.
Line: Oklahoma City is a 1-point underdog. O/U is 167½.
Online StreamESPNLive Stats | Twitter | Facebook
Game Notes: Thunder: here | Grizzlies: here

SETTING THE SCENE

  • It’s elimination time in the Vegas Summer league as the Thunder will play the Memphis Grizzlies in first round of the tournament.
  • Oklahoma City is the sixth seed. They went 2-1 and finished with eight quarter points out of 12 points possible. Memphis finished 27th, going 1-2 and 4 total points out of 12.
  • With a win, Oklahoma City will play on Saturday against either Utah or Orlando in the second round. If Oklahoma City loses, the Thunder will play either team as well. They’ll play in the loser’s bracket and that’ll be on Friday at 4:30 p.m.

FOLLOWING THE ACTION

  • The Summer League games are on ESPNU and on NBATV. Oklahoma City’s first game will be on ESPNU. Check your local listings. (or here on game day).

SUMMER LEAGUE SCHEDULE

 

Date Opponent Time/Result Location
Friday, July 6 vs. Charlotte L 88-87 0-1, 2 points
Saturday, July 7 vs. Brooklyn W 90-76 1-1, 5 points
Monday, July 9 vs. Toronto W 92-82 2-1, 8 points
Friday, July 6 vs. Charlotte 5p.m./NBATV Cox Pavillion

THUNDER INJURY REPORT

  • All of Oklahoma City’s roster appears healthy.



Three things to watch

Terrance Ferguson

Ferguson has been struggling offensively. You want to see him have at least once game where you go “wow, that’s impressive.” Maybe that’s today or is he saving it for the single elimination tournament? We’ll see. No more of this 1-of-8 shooting tonight. If not, let’s see who steps up in his place.

Diallo

They say Hamidou Diallo is a stud. He was a projected lottery pick in 2017 but fell hard in the 2018 draft. Let’s see if he could live up to a remote ability of that hype in this year’s summer league. He only scored three points on 1-of-3 shooting yesterday. Would like to see him a little more involved. Maybe get a start against Brooklyn and give the young kid some confidence.

Fun

It’s Summer League! Outside of getting young kids run on the hardwood, this doesn’t mean much. Don’t over react if Terrance Ferguson goes something stupid like 2-of-17, that’s the sport. Things are different. They’re just trying to get them action and sometimes it doesn’t work out and that’s fine. Look at Adam Morrison. He was a multiple time MVP Summer League winner.

We invite you to follow Thunder Digest on Twitter and like Thunder Digest on Facebook. Don't forget to subsribe on Youtube! Our Podcast is on iTunes and on Stitcher. We also have a Thunder Digest Instagram account if you love fun Thunder photography!

Thunder, Nets talk Melo trade

The Carmelo Anthony trade talks are continuing to heat up. Oklahoma City and the Brooklyn Nets apparently spoke on sending Anthony to the Nets, with the Nets buying him out and would at least send Jeremy Lin to Oklahoma City.

While this guy isn’t verified, he is a legitimate NBA writer and radio guy for XM/Sirius.

Anthony, 34, is set to make $27.9 million this upcoming season and would cost over $132 million in cap and tax for the Thunder. Oklahoma City really wants to move him and save money in the process. Currently, their cap/tax is around $300 million.

There’s a couple of issues with the trade:

  1. Lin only makes $12.5 million. Despite being under the cap, Brooklyn would still have to match about $11 million to make the trade work.
  2. That leaves only two players who can match the totals: Allen Crabbe ($18.5 million) and DeMarre Carroll ($14.5 million).

Brooklyn wants assets. Oklahoma City doesn’t have a lot. So, this is going to be interesting in seeing what the Thunder can offer the Nets.

If this move happens Oklahoma City will save about $10 million in taxes alone. If they were to waive Carroll, it would reach $50 million in savings. If they were to waive Carroll and Singler, it would reach $70 million in tax savings.

One thing we know is for sure, if this is leaking out, it’s probably dead. Most Thunder trades don’t happen after they’ve been leaked. Remember the last time a Brooklyn trade leaked? Perkins for Brook Lopez? Yeah, we got Enes Kanter from Utah instead. You don’t betray Sam Presti’s trust.

We’ll continue to keep you updated on this trade if in fact, something does come from it.

We invite you to follow Thunder Digest on Twitter and like Thunder Digest on Facebook. Don't forget to subsribe on Youtube! Our Podcast is on iTunes and on Stitcher. We also have a Thunder Digest Instagram account if you love fun Thunder photography!

Carmelo Anthony waiving No Trade Clause

ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski said Oklahoma City made trade talks with Houston and Miami during Summer League about trading Carmelo Anthony.

Within those trade talks, Anthony has told Oklahoma City he will waive the No Trade Clause to give Oklahoma City a better opportunity to trade his $27.9 million contract he opted into in June.

Anthony’s contract, while massive in just dollar amount, is even more so when you factor in the tax that comes with it for Oklahoma City. Since Oklahoma City is a repeat payer of the luxury tax, they must pay a “repeater” fee. They’re paying $4.75 per dollar over the luxury tax line. All of this has pushed their tax bill to $150 million, which is more than their actual salary totals.

Anthony’s contract, with salary and tax is holding $132.5 million for the Thunder. If Oklahoma City waived Melo and stretched out his contract over the life of three seasons, it would save them over $100 in luxury tax alone for the upcoming season. They would still have to pay $9.3 million per season over the next three.

Houston has not been shy in their courting of Oklahoma City and Anthony. With Luc A Mbah Moute going to the Clippers and Trevor Ariza going to the Suns, their very thin bench is already lacking at the three spot, which would be an immediate fit for Anthony.

Miami has been looking to unload some players who aren’t in their future. The first that comes to mind is Dion Wiaters and James Johnson. They’re cheaper and they provide a long term stability for the Thunder at the two and four positions. I’m sure Oklahoma City would have to provide some assets to off load Anthony’s contract.

Houston is another team mentioned by Woj. It’s unknown what the Thunder would get in return as the Rockets only have 11 players on their roster at this moment.

While they haven’t been mentioned, the Cleveland Cavaliers could be a real target if Anthony wanted to waive the NTC to anyone. The money works and the Thunder are probably more inclined with eating that money for a player who’s actually a fit for the fast paced offense they would want to play this season. It’s unknown if Anthony waive it for every team or if he’s being selective on which teams are available for trade.

Wojnarowski said said the Thunder are looking to move him within the next 7-10 days.

We invite you to follow Thunder Digest on Twitter and like Thunder Digest on Facebook. Don't forget to subsribe on Youtube! Our Podcast is on iTunes and on Stitcher. We also have a Thunder Digest Instagram account if you love fun Thunder photography!

Thunder Summer League #3: vs. Toronto Raptors

Oklahoma City Thunder (1-1, 5 points) vs. Toronto Raptors (0-1, 3 points)

Monday, July 9 :: 2:30 p.m. CST :: Thomas & Mack Center (17,923) :: Las Vegas, Nevada
TV Coverage: NBATV
Radio Coverage: n/a
View from the enemyHere.
Line: Oklahoma City is a 4½-point favorite. O/U is 168½.
Online StreamESPNLive Stats | Twitter | Facebook
Game Notes: Thunder: here | Raptors: here

SETTING THE SCENE

  • The Oklahoma City Thunder close out their preliminary schedule against the winless Toronto Raptors in the Thomas & Mack Center at 2:30 p.m. Thunder Time.
  • Oklahoma City is coming off a blowout win over the Brooklyn Nets. The Thunder led by as many as 30 in the contest and won easily 90-76 on Saturday night.
  • Toronto has dropped games to the Timberwolves (103-92) on Sunday and to the Pelicans (90-77) on Friday night.
  • The two teams have never met in the Vegas Summer League.

FOLLOWING THE ACTION

  • The Summer League games are on ESPNU and on NBATV. Oklahoma City’s first game will be on ESPNU. Check your local listings. (or here on game day).

SUMMER LEAGUE SCHEDULE

Date Opponent Time/Channel Location
Friday, July 6 vs. Charlotte L 88-87 0-1, 2 points
Saturday, July 7 vs. Brooklyn W 90-76 1-1, 5 points
Monday, July 9 vs. Toronto 2:30 p.m. (NBA TV) Thomas & Mack Center

THUNDER INJURY REPORT

  • All of Oklahoma City’s roster appears healthy.

Summer League Format

  • Quarter Point System

    In each game:

    • 1 point is awarded to the team that scores more points than its opponent in a given quarter
    • ½ a point is awarded to both teams in the circumstance when the teams score the same number of points in a quarter
    • 0 points are awarded to a team that scores fewer points than its opponent in a given quarter
    • A total of 4 points are awarded for a given game
    > • No additional quarter points are awarded for winning the game
    > • No additional quarter points are awarded in the case of an overtime period (i.e., 4 quarter points are the maximum that a team can earn in a game).
    • At the conclusion of the preliminary round (3 games), a team can accrue between 0-12 quarter points

    Game Rules

    All-non tournament games played during the NBA Summer League will be played under the following rules:

    • Four (4) ten minute (:10) quarters
    • Eight minute (:08) halftime
    • Ten minute (:10) warm up period prior to the start of each game
    • Two minute (:02) minute overtime period
    > • Each team is allowed one (1) 60-second timeout
    > • Penalty begins on the 2nd team foul
    • The second overtime period (or any overtime period thereafter) is sudden death (first team to score a point wins)
    • Teams are in the penalty on the 10th team foul or 2nd team foul in the last two (2) minutes
    • Players foul out with their 10th personal foul
    • Each team will receive two (2) full timeouts (60 seconds) per half
    • Each team will also receive one advance (stop play, ability to substitute, and inbound the ball from the 28′ mark in the frontcourt) in the last two minutes of the 4th quarter and in any overtime period
    • Mandatory timeouts (60 seconds) will be taken at the first stoppage of play after 5:59 and 2:59 of each quarter
    • A 60-second timeout taken by a team will negate the next mandatory timeout due in that quarter
    • Timeouts do not carry over
    • All other NBA rules apply.



Three things to watch

Terrance Ferguson

Ferguson has been struggling offensively. You want to see him have at least once game where you go “wow, that’s impressive.” Maybe that’s today or is he saving it for the single elimination tournament? We’ll see. No more of this 1-of-8 shooting tonight. If not, let’s see who steps up in his place.

Diallo

They say Hamidou Diallo is a stud. He was a projected lottery pick in 2017 but fell hard in the 2018 draft. Let’s see if he could live up to a remote ability of that hype in this year’s summer league. He only scored three points on 1-of-3 shooting yesterday. Would like to see him a little more involved. Maybe get a start against Brooklyn and give the young kid some confidence.

Fun

It’s Summer League! Outside of getting young kids run on the hardwood, this doesn’t mean much. Don’t over react if Terrance Ferguson goes something stupid like 2-of-17, that’s the sport. Things are different. They’re just trying to get them action and sometimes it doesn’t work out and that’s fine. Look at Adam Morrison. He was a multiple time MVP Summer League winner.

We invite you to follow Thunder Digest on Twitter and like Thunder Digest on Facebook. Don't forget to subsribe on Youtube! Our Podcast is on iTunes and on Stitcher. We also have a Thunder Digest Instagram account if you love fun Thunder photography!

Thunder get first Summer League win

After almost beating a Summer League Favorite in the Hornets on Friday night, Oklahoma City rebounded well, figuratively and literally, to a 90-76 win over the Brooklyn Nets in Day 2 of the Las Vegas Summer League.

It’s the first win in Vegas for the Thunder since they were the SuperSonics.

Hamidou Diallo scored 19 points in 21 minutes. His athleticism was on full display as Oklahoma City used a 30-13 second quarter explosion to really separated themselves from the Nets.

Summer League is about working on some of the fundamentals. You know, getting to the right spot. Attacking off the pick-n-roll and creating space for shooters in today’s NBA. Diallo was able to get to the corner and use his speed and athleticism to create space from his defender and really used all of the 21 game minutes to his advantage.

Oklahoma City used a 12-3 run towards the end of the first quarter through the second to give Oklahoma City the lead for good. They pushed the lead out to as many as 19 in the quarter before leading 50-32 at the break.

The lead would balloon even more in the third quarter as Oklahoma City took a 65-35 lead on a PJ Dozier lay up with 5:39 left in the third.

Dozier, despite not scoring a ton, was a real enforcer on the court. He was a game high plus-27. While individual game plus/minus can be misleading. One that high is often a precursor to how well he was able to impact the game, even if he didn’t do it on the scoreboard. Dozier, the second-year man out of South Carolina finished with eight points and five rebounds on 4-of-9 shooting.

The Nets would find a way to cut it to 12 points after Oklahoma City removed their starters and the Nets left theirs in. However, Oklahoma City did just enough not to blow a 30-point lead like they’re the Utah Jazz in the playoffs.

Deonte Burton, fresh off signing a two-way contract with the Thunder scored 13 points on 6-of-8 shooting. The Thunder draft picks not named Diallo did their thing. Kevin Hervey struggled. He was 1-of-8 for only two points. He went 0-of-3 from deep. Devon Hall was better than Friday. He finished with 11 points on 4-of-6 shooting. However, he didn’t have a single rebound, block, assist, or turnover.

Daniel Hamilton finished with 12 points, nine rebounds and seven assists in his second summer league game. Rashawn Thomas finished with eight points and 11 rebounds. Dakari Johnson scored 11 points, grabbed six rebounds and dished out five assists. He was plus-19 and had zero turnovers.

Then, there was Terrance Ferguson. Ferguson struggled shooting going 1-of-8. A couple of things to note: 1) Ferguson is the singular point for the offense. So, teams are keying off him. You’d like one game throughout the Summer League of you going “wow, this is nice.” So far, you’re not getting that. Ferguson had two points in 28 minutes. He was 0-of-6 from deep. He finished with two points and four rebounds. He’s 3-of-17 from the floor and 0-of-9 from deep. He’s only taken four free throw attempts over two games.

Oklahoma City is off on Sunday but they’ll return to the court on Monday against Toronto Raptors at 2:30 p.m. That game will be on NBATV. That’s the end of the preliminary games. Oklahoma City will play at least two tournament games. One in the winner’s bracket and then you get a consolation game. Those will be announced at a later time and date.

Highlights of the win

We invite you to follow Thunder Digest on Twitter and like Thunder Digest on Facebook. Don't forget to subsribe on Youtube! Our Podcast is on iTunes and on Stitcher. We also have a Thunder Digest Instagram account if you love fun Thunder photography!

Thunder Summer League Game #2: vs. Brooklyn Nets

Oklahoma City Thunder (0-1, 2 points) vs. Brooklyn Nets (0-1, 3 points)

Saturday, July 7 :: 6:00 p.m. CST :: T-Mobile Arena (17,923) :: Las Vegas, Nevada
TV Coverage: NBATV
Radio Coverage: n/a
View from the enemyHere.
Line: Oklahoma City is a 5-point underdog. O/U is 167½.
Online StreamESPNLive Stats | Twitter | Facebook
Game Notes: Thunder: here | Hornets: here

SETTING THE SCENE

  • Day 2 of Summer League for the Thunder and they’re taking on the Brooklyn Nets.
  • Oklahoma City fell 88-87 to one of the Las Vegas Summer League favorites, the Charlotte Hornets on Friday night. Oklahoma City led for a majority of the contest.
  • Brooklyn also lost in their opener. They were dropped by the Orlando Magic 86-80 in the previous game on Friday.
  • Oklahoma City won two quarters, while Brooklyn won three before losing their game. The points are tie-breakers in any scenario.
  • It’s the first time Brooklyn and Oklahoma City will meet in Summer league since July 7, 2014. Oklahoma City won that game 98-84. Jeramy Lamb had 26 points in the victory.

FOLLOWING THE ACTION

  • The Summer League games are on ESPNU and on NBATV. Oklahoma City’s first game will be on ESPNU. Check your local listings. (or here on game day).

SUMMER LEAGUE SCHEDULE

Date Opponent Time/Channel Location
Friday, July 6 vs. Charlotte L 88-87 0-1, 2 points
Saturday, July 7 vs. Brooklyn 6 p.m. (NBATV) T-Mobile Arena
Monday, July 9 vs. Toronto 2:30 p.m. (NBA TV) Thomas & Mack Center

THUNDER INJURY REPORT

  • All of Oklahoma City’s roster appears healthy.

Summer League Format

  • Quarter Point System

    In each game:

    • 1 point is awarded to the team that scores more points than its opponent in a given quarter
    • ½ a point is awarded to both teams in the circumstance when the teams score the same number of points in a quarter
    • 0 points are awarded to a team that scores fewer points than its opponent in a given quarter
    • A total of 4 points are awarded for a given game
    > • No additional quarter points are awarded for winning the game
    > • No additional quarter points are awarded in the case of an overtime period (i.e., 4 quarter points are the maximum that a team can earn in a game).
    • At the conclusion of the preliminary round (3 games), a team can accrue between 0-12 quarter points

    Game Rules

    All-non tournament games played during the NBA Summer League will be played under the following rules:

    • Four (4) ten minute (:10) quarters
    • Eight minute (:08) halftime
    • Ten minute (:10) warm up period prior to the start of each game
    • Two minute (:02) minute overtime period
    > • Each team is allowed one (1) 60-second timeout
    > • Penalty begins on the 2nd team foul
    • The second overtime period (or any overtime period thereafter) is sudden death (first team to score a point wins)
    • Teams are in the penalty on the 10th team foul or 2nd team foul in the last two (2) minutes
    • Players foul out with their 10th personal foul
    • Each team will receive two (2) full timeouts (60 seconds) per half
    • Each team will also receive one advance (stop play, ability to substitute, and inbound the ball from the 28′ mark in the frontcourt) in the last two minutes of the 4th quarter and in any overtime period
    • Mandatory timeouts (60 seconds) will be taken at the first stoppage of play after 5:59 and 2:59 of each quarter
    • A 60-second timeout taken by a team will negate the next mandatory timeout due in that quarter
    • Timeouts do not carry over
    • All other NBA rules apply.



Three things to watch

Terrance Ferguson

Terrance Ferguson has been working hard or at least the Thunder are saying so. Oklahoma City will be counting a lot on the former Australian pro player. The Thunder will be looking at him for the first time in Summer League as he didn’t play last season. Oklahoma City will run everything through him.

Diallo

They say Hamidou Diallo is a stud. He was a projected lottery pick in 2017 but fell hard in the 2018 draft. Let’s see if he could live up to a remote ability of that hype in this year’s summer league. He only scored three points on 1-of-3 shooting yesterday. Would like to see him a little more involved. Maybe get a start against Brooklyn and give the young kid some confidence.

Fun

It’s Summer League! Outside of getting young kids run on the hardwood, this doesn’t mean much. Don’t over react if Terrance Ferguson goes something stupid like 2-of-17, that’s the sport. Things are different. They’re just trying to get them action and sometimes it doesn’t work out and that’s fine. Look at Adam Morrison. He was a multiple time MVP Summer League winner.

We invite you to follow Thunder Digest on Twitter and like Thunder Digest on Facebook. Don't forget to subsribe on Youtube! Our Podcast is on iTunes and on Stitcher. We also have a Thunder Digest Instagram account if you love fun Thunder photography!

Thunder sign Deonte Burton to two-way contract

Deonte Burton and the Oklahoma City have agreed to a two-way contract on Saturday.

Burton, 24, is no stranger to the great state of Oklahoma, as he played at Iowa State for a couple of seasons. He attended Marquette before that.

During his four years of college, he averaged 10.4 points, maximizing it out at 15.1 points his senior year at Iowa State, shooting 40 percent for his collegiate career.

Last season, Burton played for Wonju Dongbu Promy of the Korean Basketball League. He was the league MVP and averaged 23.8 points per game on 47.1 percent shooting and 33.6 percent from three. He also averaged 8.8 rebounds per game in 31.1 minutes per game.

Currently, Burton is playing for the Thunder’s summer league team. He scored two points in the loss to Charlotte on Friday night.

Two-way contracts will allow a player to spend up to 45 days with the NBA team this season while continuing to play for the Blue in the G League. Two-way contracts are a new concept in the NBA as of last season, part of the new collective bargaining agreement that begins this season. Each team is allowed up to two two-way players in addition to its 15 roster spots. So, that’s 17 spots.

Daniel Hamilton and PJ Dozier were the two two-way contracts for the Thunder last season. They played in a combined eight games.

Oklahoma City’s roster now sits 14. The Thunder may add one or two more players before getting ready for training camp.

We invite you to follow Thunder Digest on Twitter and like Thunder Digest on Facebook. Don't forget to subsribe on Youtube! Our Podcast is on iTunes and on Stitcher. We also have a Thunder Digest Instagram account if you love fun Thunder photography!

Thunder, Melo work on parting ways

In one of the most understood moves of the summer, Oklahoma City and Carmelo Anthony’s reps are working to get Carmelo Anthony out of Oklahoma City before the season starts.

According to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski, the talks have begun to buy out and/or trade Anthony. The move will save the Thunder just over $105 million in total salary and tax. Anthony’s agent, Leon Rose of CAA Sports, has a strong relationship and history with Thunder general manager Sam Presti, and they’ll work together on Anthony’s exit through trade, the NBA’s stretch provision or a combined buyout and stretch.

Any trade that happens will have to go through Anthony. He owns a no trade clause and therefore can control wherever he wants to go. That said, it’s highly expected any move the Thunder make will be a salaried dump for both teams. Whoever takes on Anthony’s contract will agree to waive him immediately.

Oklahoma City can use the stretch provision on Anthony’s $27.9 million contract to eliminate a staggering $107 million off the team’s 2018-19 payroll and tax bill, but the Thunder first plan to pursue trade possibilities with teams looking to acquire a massive expiring deal to free up salary cap space for July 2019 free agency.

When you stretch a contract, you can stretch it double the length of the remaining years plus one. So, Anthony’s contract is one year long, so you double it: two years of stretching and then plus one. So, you can stretch it over three years.

Houston is the first team that is interested in Anthony’s ability if and when he’s bought out or traded.

Anthony arrived from New York after waiving his no trade clause, sending Enes Kanter to the Knicks and bringing what everyone thought would be the “Big Three.” After injuries and inconsistencies eliminated the “Big Three” monicker, Oklahoma City made comments at exit interviews, the Thunder’s core would be Russ, PG and Steven.

Anthony did give it 100 percent. Despite some obviously flare ups on the bench in the playoffs about playing time. Oklahoma City and Anthony experiment didn’t work out for either side, despite both giving everything to it.

“I think for me, my focus would be on kind of figuring out what I want out of the rest of my career, what I want in my future, what am I willing to accept, if I’m willing to accept that at all,” Anthony said in his exit interview. “I think everybody knows that I’ve sacrificed kind of damned near everything — family, moving here by myself, sacrificed my game — for the sake of the team, and was willing to sacrifice anything and everything in order for this situation to work out.

Any trade the Thunder made would be a salary dump as well. Even if it was to Chicago for let’s say Robin Lopez, who makes $14 million this upcoming season, it would save Oklahoma City an extra $15 million in salary and taxes.

Oklahoma City has until August 31 to part ways with Anthony or be liable for his entire salary on the year’s cap.

We invite you to follow Thunder Digest on Twitter and like Thunder Digest on Facebook. Don't forget to subsribe on Youtube! Our Podcast is on iTunes and on Stitcher. We also have a Thunder Digest Instagram account if you love fun Thunder photography!