The Thunder have checked on Denver’s willingness to part with Wilson Chandler, as Chris Mannix of SI.com reports amid his weekly notebook column. Chandler is making almost $6.758MM this year in the next-to-last season of his contract, and only $2MM of his nearly $7.172MM salary for 2015/16 is guaranteed. It’s unclear what Oklahoma City would be willing to give up in return, but the Thunder would have to relinquish some salary to acquire Chandler, since they don’t have a trade exception large enough to accommodate him and they’re only about $1MM shy of the luxury tax threshold.
A report in July indicated that the Nuggets were thinking of trading either Chandler, JaVale McGee or both, and Denver apparently put Chandler in a pair of trade proposals to Minnesota for Kevin Love before Love wound up in Cleveland. Chandler, 27, is performing slightly above his career averages this season as he puts up 14.7 points and 6.3 rebounds in 30.3 minutes per game with 38.3% three-point shooting. He’s starting at small forward in front of Danilo Gallinari for a deep but mediocre Nuggets team that’s gone just 10-12 but is 8-5 after a 2-7 start. Denver is about $3MM shy of the tax line.
The Thunder are climbing out of an early-season hole that resulted from injuries to Kevin Durant, Russell Westbrook and a host of others. They’ve won six of their last seven games to improve to 9-13, a mark that’s just two games back in the loss column from the final playoff spot in the Western Conference.