Thunder Waive T.J. Leaf, Admiral Schofield

The Thunder have made a pair of roster cuts, announcing in a press release that they’ve waived forwards T.J. Leaf and Admiral Schofield.

Leaf and Schofield were acquired by Oklahoma City in offseason trades. The Thunder took on Schofield’s contract as part of a deal that saw them move up from No. 53 to No. 37 in this year’s draft to select Vit Krejci. The club received Leaf and a future second-round pick in a deal for Jalen Lecque, who is on a cheaper contract.

The fact that neither Leaf nor Schofield made the Thunder’s regular season roster suggests those two trades were motivated by the opportunities to land Krejci and a future second-rounder.

Leaf, the 18th overall pick in the 2017 draft, failed to carve out a role as a regular, reliable rotation player during three seasons in Indiana. The former UCLA standout averaged just 3.0 PPG and 2.5 RPG in 28 games (7.9 MPG) for the Pacers in 2019/20.

Schofield, meanwhile, spent his rookie season in 2019/20 with the Wizards after being drafted 42nd overall a year ago. He played limited minutes in D.C., averaging 3.0 PPG and 1.4 RPG in 33 games (11.2 MPG).

Both Leaf and Schofield will become unrestricted free agents, assuming they clear waivers. They’ll also be paid their 2020/21 salaries, since they were fully guaranteed. Leaf will earn $4.33MM, while Schofield makes $1.52MM. Schofield will also receive a partial guarantee of $300K on next season’s salary.

As for the Thunder, they now have 15 players on fully guaranteed contracts and Frank Jackson on a partially guaranteed contract. They’ll have to make at least one more cut before the regular season roster deadline on Monday.

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