Photo Credits: Kelley L. Cox/USA Today Sports
When Oklahoma City originally signed forward Gabriel Deck to a four-year, $14.5 million contract, some doubted that the 26-year-old would hang around the Thunder for as long as listed. As reports have trickled into the mainstream, those suspicions may have been correct, but not in the way you might have expected.
As first reported by Albert Rogé, Liga ACB powerhouse FC Barcelona are currently in negotiation talks with Gabriel Deck. Contract details are yet to be released.
Though this deal between Deck and FC Barcelona is far from finalized, an agreement in which Deck returns to Liga ACB play is sensible from his perspective. Deck averaged 8.4 points, 4.0 rebounds, and 2.4 assists in his 10-game stint with Oklahoma City last season, and though he beamed moments of light, his style of play clearly ruffled feathers with NBA play. Deck is a crafty passer capable of dicing in no-looks and cross-court passes, but his rather sluggish approach to his jumper and mid-range play ran against the Thunder’s grain of pace-and-space, uptempo play.
Deck’s contract is non-guaranteed for each of his following three seasons, so a change of direction between either party wouldn’t cost the Thunder any extra luggage. A scenario in which Deck stays with the Thunder as opposed to rejoining the Liga ACB, as reported, would entangle him in a saturated roster — so moving back to major minutes overseas could be an incentive.
If Gabriel Deck chooses to sign elsewhere, the Thunder will garner an extra roster spot to play with, and a prized jersey number. As Josh Giddey stared in his introductory press conference, his ideal jersey number is 6 — Deck currently holds that. Deck leaving would lead the way to Giddey garnering his prized number, and a lot of Thunder fans using jersey insurance.
Deck is currently playing with Team Argentina in the Olympics. More updates to follow.