Minutes before Thursday’s NBA trading deadline, the Oklahoma City Thunder completed two deals that could help boost its bench both now and in the future.
Reserve guard Eric Maynor was sent to Portland, and the Thunder acquired swingman Ronnie Brewer from New York in exchange for a future second-round pick, The Oklahoman has learned.
In exchange for Maynor, the Thunder will receive what is known as a trade exception, which allows a team that is over the salary cap to acquire a future salary up to the value of the exception without matching salaries. The exception is valued at roughly $2.5 million. Under league rules, the Thunder will have one calendar year to use the exception.
Brewer, a 6-foot-7 guard/forward, is in his seventh NBA season after previous stints with Utah, Memphis and Chicago. Brewer is known as a defensive specialist and holds career averages of 8.4 points, three rebounds, 1.7 assists and 1.3 steals. He’s played in 464 career games, starting 301 of them.
The addition of Brewer, 27, figures to give the Thunder’s second string some much-needed support in the form of experience and additional defense.
Maynor was set to become a restricted free agent this summer, and it was unlikely that he was going to be re-signed. He lost his backup job to Reggie Jackson in mid-December after being slow to recover from a torn ACL he sustained in January 2012.
In 37 games with the Thunder this season, Maynor averaged 2.8 points, 0.5 rebounds and two assists while shooting 31.3 percent, all career lows.
Maynor’s departure leaves the Thunder with only two point guards remaining on the 15-man roster. It’s likely the team will explore options to bring in a third guard before the playoffs begin.