OKC Thunder give Steven Adams help, trade for Taj Gibson

Taj Gibson of the Chicago Bulls goes up for a dunk against the Toronto Raptors. Photo/Getty Images
Taj Gibson of the Chicago Bulls goes up for a dunk against the Toronto Raptors. Photo/Getty Images

Kiwi NBA star Steven Adams has a new frontcourt ally on the Oklahoma City roster, with the Thunder dealing for Chicago Bulls power forward Taj Gibson just moments before today's trade deadline expired.

OKC exchanged bench players Cameron Payne, Joffrey Lauvergne and Anthony Morrow for Gibson, sharpshooter Doug McDermott and a second-round pick from the Bulls, a move that would significantly strengthen their playoff claims this season.

In his fourth season with the Thunder, Adams has become their front-court mainstay, especially since high-scoring back-up Enes Kanter punched a courtside chair and broke his hand last month.

Over 55 games, Adams is averaging 12.2 points and 7.9 rebounds, both career highs.

Gibson's arrival would give OKC a potential starter alongside Adams and someone who could also slide across to the centre position when the Kiwi goes to the bench.

This season, Gibson has averaged 11.6 points and 7.0 rebounds over 55 games.

McDermott offers the Thunder another outside scoring option - he's averaging 10.2 points a game, while shooting 37.3% from the three-point arc.

He represents an upgrade on Morrow, who has previously filled the same role with OKC, averaging 5.8 points and shooting 29.4% from long distance.

For the Bulls, the most attractive piece of the swap would be back-up point guard Payne.

Chicago have struggled at the point, with veteran Rajon Rondo unable to spark their starting line-up, so they'll be keen to give Payne a chance in their rotation.

Meanwhile, the trade news was not so good for Australian veteran Andrew Bogut, who was moved from Dallas Mavericks to Philadelphia 76ers, in exchange for younger, more athletic Nerlens Noel.

Bogut, who won an NBA ring with Golden State Warriors in 2015, will likely be bought out by the re-building Sixers, making him available to other teams that value his experience.

Among those most interested in Bogut are defending champions Cleveland Cavaliers.

- NZ Herald

Get the news delivered straight to your inbox

Receive the day’s news, sport and entertainment in our daily email newsletter

SIGN UP NOW
Stats provided by

© Copyright 2017, NZME. Publishing Limited

Assembled by: (static) on production bpcf05 at 30 May 2017 20:55:15 Processing Time: 338ms