3 Oklahoma City Thunder players who won’t be back next season

Mandatory Credit: Alonzo Adams-USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: Alonzo Adams-USA TODAY Sports /
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Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports /

Here are three players that will not return to the Oklahoma City Thunder next season.

While the 2021 NBA Playoffs have now entered the conference finals, all eyes will be on the draft lottery taking place Tuesday night. With the right to select Oklahoma State’s Cade Cunningham on the line, all eyes will be on the Oklahoma City Thunder and all of the draft picks general manager Sam Presti has accumulated for the foreseeable future.

The Thunder are obviously entering a rebuild phase, in the hopes that they can use those draft picks to create the next powerhouse team in the Western Conference that becomes an odds-on favorite to compete. This year, the Thunder have six draft picks at their disposal, and there are only so many roster spots available on the squad. So who will be shown the door?

Here are three players who probably won’t return to the Thunder next season.

3. Tony Bradley

The Thunder have embraced their corps of young players, as evidenced by their decision to shut down Al Horford to give them extra playing time. However, they could very well move on from one of their younger athletes who is set to become a restricted free agent in Tony Bradley.

The 23-year-old spent his first three seasons with the Utah Jazz before he was sent over to the Philadelphia 76ers. His tenure with the Eastern Conference team was short-lived, as he was traded to the Thunder in a three-way trade also involving the New York Knicks.

Bradley played in 22 games with the Thunder this season, where he put up an average of 8.7 points and 6.1 rebounds per game while shooting 65.6 percent from the field.

Those are strong numbers for a backup, but since Bradley is a restricted free agent, he has a qualifying offer worth $5.3 million for next season. It’s not a backbreaking figure by any means, but it’s not worthwhile if the Thunder don’t see him as part of their future. They might be better off just letting another team make a run at him and plugging in one of their many draft picks over the years.