Oklahoma City Thunder updated depth chart after trading Gordon Hayward

The Oklahoma City Thunder add experience to their roster in the final hours of the 2023-24 NBA trade deadline.

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The Oklahoma City Thunder currently sit at 35-16 and are tied for first in the Western Conference. As the Thunder prepare for a deep run this postseason, it wouldn't hurt to add some veteran experience to what is a relatively young roster. Today, in the final hours of the trade deadline, the Thunder did exactly that. 

Per Adrian Wojnarowski, the Oklahoma City Thunder are finalizing a trade with the Charlotte Hornets for Gordon Hayward in exchange for Tre Mann, Vasilije Micic, Davis Bertans, and draft compensation.

Both teams acknowledge reality with this move. Charlotte is not making the playoffs. It's time to accept the reality of the season, send out their veterans, and start to rebuild around their youth in Brandon Miller and LaMelo. As for the Thunder, while they are exceptionally talented, they lack experience. In all likelihood, unlike Charlotte, they're still going to be playing come late April. On top of being an effective rotational piece for OKC, Hayward's been through the playoff grind. This makes him a good pick for the Thunder.

Hayward is 33-years-old and hasn't played in a game since Dec. 26 due to a calf injury. However, he's still averaging 14.5 points, 4.6 assists, and 4.7 rebounds per game this season. He's a smart player that fits OKC's identity. He can drive (something the Thunder do more than anybody), pass, and shoot. Most importantly though, he'll bring experience and poise to an OKC locker room that's never seen playoff action before.

As for the Hornets, Bertans should help space the floor and Tre Mann fits right in with their roster. The 23-year-old guard should be able to find his role in Charlotte as a backup behind LaMelo. On top of that, considering Ball's proclivity for injury this season, Mann could find himself playing major minutes alongside Bridges and Miller. 

Updated Oklahoma City Thunder Depth Chart

  • PG: Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, Josh Giddey, Cason Wallace, Jalen Williams
  • SG: Josh Giddey, Cason Wallace, Isaiah Joe, Lindy Waters III, Keyontae Johnson
  • SF: Lugentz Dort, Gordon Hayward, Isaiah Joe, Aaron Wiggins, Keyontae Johnson
  • PF: Jalen Williams, Gordon Hayward, Aaron Wiggins, Kenrich Williams, Ousame Dieng
  • C: Chet Holmgren, Jaylin Williams, Kenrich Williams, Olivier Sarr, Aleksej Pokusevski

The Thunder's starting lineup was unaffected by this move, which bodes well for their rhythm as the season moves forward. Mann and Bertans didn't play much in the first place, so replacing them with Gordan Hayward was a big step forward. Even if Hayward doesn't address the Thunder's rebounding issue, they've made it this far already without doing so. All in all, the Thunder's decision to add Hayward to the lineup was a wise one and should pay off in the long run.

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