Photo Credits: Garrett Ellwood/NBAE Getty Images
After a week of speculation towards Gabriel Deck’s arrival — the day has finally come, as Monday the Oklahoma City Thunder officially inked the 26-year-old swingman to a multi-year contract.
As first reported by The Athletic’s Andrew Schlecht, and later relayed by multiple sources, the 6-foot-8 forward has signed a four-year contract worth up to $14.5 million. Deck will make $3.87 million for his services this season, while years two through four will be non-guaranteed with a fourth-year team option.
Deck’s deal will be frontloaded, as the forward will make $3.67 million in year two, and $3.48 in years three and four.
For Deck, his transition to the NBA has been a long time coming. The forward received interest from multiple teams dating back to last summer, but he instead opted to remain with Real Madrid for the entirety of the regular-season. With Deck’s new arrival to Oklahoma City, the 26-year-old has paid an exit clause (worth close to $2 million) in order to make the NBA jump.
Deck has had a long trail of success playing overseas. In his 11-year career (started at 15) Deck has won three Spanish Supercups, three LNB championships (Argentina’s top league,) two LNB Finals MVP accolades, and an LNB MVP award in 2018.
At age 26, Deck will not only be veteran presence on the roster — but he will paid as such. Deck enters the Thunder as it’s fourth-oldest member behind Al Horford (34), Mike Muscala (29), and Kenrich Williams (26.) In that same regard, Deck will receive the third-highest salary on the active roster, as only Al Horford ($27.5 million) and Shai Gilgeous-Alexander ($4.1 million) rival his $3.87 million first-year deal.
Deck presents a well-rounded game to facilitate his 6-foot-8 232-pound frame. “El Tortuga” or “The Turtle” as he’s known by fans, averaged 9.7 points, 3.8 rebounds, and 1.2 assists in 58 appearances with Real Madrid, shooting 36.5 percent from three on two attempts per contest. Point being — he does a little bit of everything. His game consists of a flurry of crafty passes, while showing zero signs of fear when attacking the basket. He may not be the flashiest or most-athletic player in rotations, but his “do-it-all” mentality falls right in line with Oklahoma City’s roster.
There is no surefire calendar date for Deck’s debut as he is currently in the midst of the immigration process, but the expectation is he will join the roster in late April.