Thunder Make Good On Promise To Huestis
By Randy Renner
The Thunder's second 1st round draft pick from last year, who made NBA history by agreeing to delay his arrival in the big league by first playing in the D-League, has now signed a contract with the Thunder.
Josh Huestis, the 29th overall pick in the 2014 NBA Draft, is believed to have signed a typical 4-year rookie scale contract with the first two years guaranteed and team options for the next two years.
This coming season Huestis will make approximately $950,000 or roughly $925,000 more than he made last season with the Thunder's D-League team the Oklahoma City Blue.
Over the years it's been fairly common for NBA teams to pick foreign players in the 1st round and then allow them to continue to play overseas, especially when those teams have a late 1st round pick.
Last summer the Thunder had two 1st round picks which they used on forward Mitch McGary and then Huestis. Huestis, his agent and the Thunder agreed the best thing for both parties would be to have Huestis go the D-League route to further improve his game while getting maximum playing time. He averaged 33 minutes a game for the Blue while starting most of the team's games, averaging 10.3 points and 5.7 rebounds.
The Thunder were able to save about a million bucks in salary, keep roster flexibility and have an opportunity to have Huestis in the Thunder fold for five years instead of the normal four.
Both Huestis and the Thunder seem to be very happy with how things have worked out so don't be surprised if more teams with late 1st round draft picks try to do the same thing.