Thunder Trade Jerami Grant To Nuggets

4:33pm: The Nuggets have officially announced the trade, making it official.

12:26pm: The first-round pick going to the Thunder for Grant will be top-10 protected for the next three drafts, according to ESPN’s Zach Lowe (Twitter link), who adds that it would convert into two second-rounders in the very unlikely event it doesn’t convey by 2022.

9:37am: The Nuggets and Thunder have agreed to a trade that will send forward Jerami Grant to Denver, reports ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski (via Twitter). League sources tell Wojnarowski that Oklahoma City will receive a 2020 first-round pick in exchange for Grant.

Grant, 25, enjoyed his best season as a pro in 2018/19 as the Thunder’s starting power forward, averaging 13.6 PPG, 5.2 RPG, and 1.3 BPG with a shooting line of .497/.392/.710. He has one guaranteed year left on his contract, plus a player option for 2020/21.

After surrendering their 2019 first-round pick to shed salary and get out of the tax, the Nuggets will give up next year’s pick in order to add a quality veteran contributor to their frontcourt, which had been their biggest area of need. Denver had been quiet this past week in free agency, with $121MM+ in guaranteed money already on the club’s books.

The Nuggets will retain their mid-level exception, since Grant will be absorbed using one of the team’s sizable trade exceptions from last summer’s salary dumps. However, team salary is now above $130MM and inching close to the tax line, so I wouldn’t expect Denver to make any major signings. The acquisition of Grant may also make RFA power forward Trey Lyles expendable.

The trade will be a cost-cutting move for the Thunder, who are retooling their roster after agreeing to trade Paul George to the Clippers. Wojnarowski projects that sending Grant to Denver will save OKC approximately $39MM in salary and luxury-tax penalties, despite the fact that Grant is only earning about $9.35MM in 2019/20.

Those savings are fluid and will depend on subsequent roster moves made by the Thunder, but that $39MM estimate is a reflection of how punitive the repeater taxpayer penalties would be for the franchise this season. OKC remains above the $132.63MM tax threshold for now, but not by much — the club could conceivably get below that line with another move.

In addition to saving money, the Thunder will generate a trade exception worth Grant’s salary ($9.35MM) and will acquire their sixth future first-round pick of the week, having secured five first-rounders in the George trade. That PG13 deal also landed Oklahoma City its new starting power forward, as Danilo Gallinari projects to take Grant’s place in the club’s starting lineup.

Of course, with George and Grant headed for new homes, trade rumors surrounding Russell Westbrook figure to multiply. We rounded up the latest updates and speculation about a possible Westbrook trade on Sunday.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

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46 thoughts on “Thunder Trade Jerami Grant To Nuggets

  1. thareignman

    Boy, can’t wait to see what we do with all of these late first-rounders.. :/

    • RootedInOakland

      Idk that 2025 clips 1st could be a lottery pick which means by the time he develops u could have a solid 2030 squad, exciting stuff

    • spinach

      How about draft players like Draymond Green, Nurkic, Jokic, Marc Gasol, Wes Matthews, Danny Green and David Lee, and control them for multiple years at pittance prices?

  2. Socrates Curveball

    Quiet in FA after exercising Millsap’s option, Grant bolsters Nugget’s impressive depth and I assume fits into their Trade Exemption.

    C: Jokic
    PF: Millsap
    SF: Torrey Craig
    SG: Gary Harris
    PG: Jamal Murray

    6. G Will Barton
    7. G Monte Morris
    8. F Jerami Grant
    9. G/F Malik Beasley
    10. C Mason Plumlee
    11. F Michael Porter Jr
    12. C Juan Hernangomez
    13. C Bol Bol
    14. SF Jarred Vanderbilt

    Nuggets have an impressive roster.

      • Socrates Curveball

        Might be my favorite move of the offseason. After my least favorite move exercising Millsap’s $30M+ option. Way too much $. Grant can’t guard all 5 positions on the floor. Literally fits with anyone. Shoots the 3 ball, rim protector that can play any role. Plus, adds depth into future Yrs when Nuggets will have less cap flexibility with Murray’s contract kicking in.

    • seamaholic

      When the 11th guy on your roster is Michael friggin’ Porter Jr … you’re pretty deep. There are teams that don’t even have 11 signed players yet.

      • hiflew

        Of course you could also look at it like the 11th guy on their roster is a player that has played at all for two years and the best competition he has ever gone against are high school players.

        I agree they are deep, but Porter is nothing but a name right now. We don’t even know if he can compete in the NBA yet.

    • Z-A

      Nuggets boned themselves with that early Joker extension. Could have had more cap space.

      • seamaholic

        He would have been a restricted FA. Actually they saved a lot of money by doing it before the cap went up. He isn’t even a full max.

      • futuremvp

        That is a very wrong take. With his All-Nba selection, Nikola’s extension this year would be for 30% max, so they actually saved significant cap space for next 4 season. Not to mention possibility of alienating true star they were lucky to find with 41st pick and avoiding drama of him being heavily recruited to join with another star player in bigger market (and losing him for nothing).

      • Nope. He would have been dirt cheap last year, but he’d have been a UFA this year. It wasn’t a RSC. Meaning he’d probably be gone, to team up with KL with the Clips, or go the Mavs for a Euro super team with Doncic and KP.

        Even if he would have stayed, they benefited by signing him to a much cheaper max than they would have had to offer him this year. They got a full 5 years (no player option). The latter means he won’t make over 25% of the cap until at least Year 9. Even non-All NBA guys his year will be at 30% before then (All NBA guys at 35%).

  3. hiflew

    I wonder if this will make Trey Lyles unrestricted. The Nuggets have no need to make him an RFA anymore.

  4. jordokmiller

    I’m hoping to see them trade Gallinari to Dallas for C. Lee. Would save them a crap ton of money, and it’s not like the are expecting to compete this year.

    • RootedInOakland

      As much as I enjoy watching Cuban stockpile all the best white players in the league (blew it with Dragic tho smh) I don’t see Gallo as a fit with Doncic and KP cuz they’re all kinda PFs. They need a combo guard to complement Luka, a 3&D wing, or a rim protector

      • jordokmiller

        Who were you thinking? They’re running out of time if they want take someone in with that cap space before making their signings official.

  5. I want my Warriors to go after Trey Lyles if he’s waived and becomes a UFA.

    He fits the youth movement the franchise has endured and he can stretch the floor and create space (granted last year was an off year for his perimeter shot).

  6. JonnyLucas

    I don’t know, I think Denver runs a solid operation over there. They don’t have the star power, but their depth is impressive. It’s a fire sale in OKC.

  7. JonnyLucas

    Won’t OKC try and flip Gallinari (assuming they ship out Russ)? He has some value I would think. He’s always been a really nice player.

    • Z-A

      They need expiring contracts to turn it over. He is one. But yes he has value hes a stretch 4ish player.

  8. JonnyLucas

    Cities like OKC have no chance in this league today… where players control the transactions. They may as well go back to Seattle.

      • TJECK109

        Tampa doesn’t support baseball but will support basketball? Might as well add Pittsburgh to the list. Football and hockey well supported, though I admit I don’t think a team would do well in da burgh

        • hiflew

          Pittsburgh actually had a championship team move the next season due to lack of fan support when they had the first ABA champs. Might as well cross them off the list.

          • agentx

            I recall Moses Guthrie and the Pisces having a g0od run in Pittsburgh as well.

  9. Grant is a great add for what is likely a late 1st. He certainly can fit nicely longer term (and he’s young), but it does create a crowded 4 spot this season. Still, good move.

  10. KnicksFanCavsFan

    So the tear down of what was at least a 5-6 seed team has begun. Russ is almost definitely being moved.

    • Not a tear down, yet. The first order of business if you’re not a championship contender is to get out the luxury tax (you can’t really improve a roster trying to operate above the apron). This was a chance to get right there without giving up picks (but getting one, plus a TPE). I love Grant, but he’ll want a huge raise after the season, his contract could be swallowed whole and Gallo is coming off a great year as a FT 4. If they move Adams or Gallo for future assets, then its a tear down. RW won’t be traded even in a tear down (he’s signed for 4 years); any RW trade is about his wishes and/or what the team thinks of his future value.

  11. victorg

    am I the only one who is not really impressed with the late first round picks for a MYP type player?

    • FromTheCheapSeats

      First of all, two of those picks are tired to the Heat, who now have Jimmy Butler and… well, they have Jimmy Butler.

      And didn’t we ask the same question about the Celtics trade with Brooklyn? How’d that work out? We’ll see.

      • victorg

        what did the Cs turn those picks into ? those mia pics MAY turn out to fall 10-20 .. .clipps picks almost for sure will be 18-30 .. for PG13 in his prime

        • hiflew

          Yeah, but with 5 of them you have a much better chance of finding a superstar, even at the bottom of the first round. All of PG13, Giannis and Kawhi were picked between picks 10-15. More recently Donovan Mitchell was in the same range. And Kyle Kuzma was picked #27. Obviously it is not a guarantee, but they are there if you can find them.

  12. Tazza

    I know it’s unlikely but I’d really like to see the Nuggets make a play for a big name player. Like either of Bradley Beal or DeMare DeRozen. They could make up a package of Gary Harris, Micheal Porter Jr, Malik Beasley and Jarred Vanderbilt or similar. You’d still have lots of depth and an exciting team.
    1. Murray
    2. DeRozen/Beal
    3. Craig
    4. Millsap
    5. Jokic

    6. Barton
    7. Plumblee
    8. Grant
    9. Morris
    10. Hernagomez
    11. Bol Bol

    • Chucktoad1

      Beal would make sense, However you’re underselling Harris. Pops would jump on that trade. DeRozan is not an upgrade from Gary Harris. DeRozan is a decent if obsolete offensive player but couldn’t stop my grandmother from putting up 20.

      • Tazza

        Yeah pop would love Gary Harris especially next to Dejonte Murray. Maybe you wouldn’t give up as much for DeRozen if you traded for him but I do think he is an upgrade. I think in Denver’s system DeRozen would be perfect for playing off the ball and cutting to the hoop for Jokic to find. DeRozen is one of the best finishers in the paint for a guard. And obviously they could use him on the ball in pick and rolls and stuff. Denver has the likes of Murray, Millsap, Jokic and lots of there bench players that can stretch the floor out and allow DeRozen more space to move. Bradley Beal would be the better buy tho. Wizards should enter a rebuild and Denver can given them a good package for him. Beal would thrive as an on the ball player and scorer instead of being John Walls side kick, as he proved last year. Even playing off the ball he would be awesome and the Nuggets would be a real title contender next year with him

  13. formerlyz

    Wow great move by both sides, honestly. He only had 1 year left, so OKC trading that in for a pick makes sense, even though he is arguably young enough to keep there. It really looks like Westbrook is going to get moved. They have some other guys at that spot, but I feel like they may have done this differently if that wasnt the case. They have so many assets. It should be interesting if they look to build through that, or use them in trades

    Denver adds a big need for them. He can backup Milsap at the 4, and I think they’ll have his bird rights as a FA next year to possibly keep him on a cheaper number than Milsap, and he can even see some time defensively on the wing, where they had been relying on Torey Craig, and Malik Beasley, and a little Monte Morris out of position. Very good opportunistic acquisition

  14. x%sure

    Denver just kept up with the Angelinos with this trade. Grant could very well be the new 3. He seems to like the painted area but opportunity beckons.

    Gallinari could be a passable 4 with the strong 5 in Adams. But then IDK what OKC’s goals are and there might be a number of players rolling in from Miami.

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