Photo Credits: Rick Osentoski/USA Today
Thunder GM Sam Presti has been active this week. Presti first moved Hamidou Diallo for Svi Mykhailiuk and a second-round pick, and on Wednesday, Trevor Ariza saw his jersey flip for a return in Meyers Leonard and a second-round pick.
Presti’s latest move comes with no avail to any fans, fully guaranteeing Lu Dort’s for the 2021-2022 and 2022-2023 season.
For Lu Dort, his NBA journey started untraditionally. The Arizona State product waited through all 60 selections in the 2019 draft before receiving a phone call from Sam Presti, offering the then 20-year-old a two-way contract. Dort glistened with the Thunder’s G-League affiliate Oklahoma City Blue, posting averages of 19.5 points, 5.1 rebounds, and 2.7 assists across 13 games with the club.
Dort’s prominence with the Blue netted the guard minutes with the then injury-heavy Thunder group desperate for backcourt relief. Lu impressed throughout the entirely of his 45-day stay with the Thunder, so much to the point Presti inked the guard to a four-year 5.4M contract on June 24 of last year.
Dort emerged as a mainstay for the roster last season, budding out in Orlando for a smash-mouth series against the Harden-led Houston Rockets. Dort uber-aggressive style of play rattled Harden, icing the former MVP to cause a game seven match where the rookie garnered 30 points.
Since his star-studded rookie campaign Dort has continued to disrupt defenders, all-the-while adding more skills to his offensive toolbar, nailing in 12.4 points off 32.9% three-point shooting, 3.6 rebounds, and 1.6 assists across 37 games.
With Dort’s remaining team option locked up for the future Oklahoma City adds a third member to their 2022-2023 payroll, tagging up with veterans Al Horford and Kenrich Williams.
Dort will make $1.78M in the 2021-22 season and $1.93M in 2022-23.