The Oklahoma City Thunder were immediately linked to NBA veteran Corey Brewer after his contract was bought out from the Los Angeles Lakers.
Yahoo’s Shams Charania reported that Brewer was in talks with “playoff teams” after departing from the Lakers. ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski then provided even more clarity, writing that the Thunder were the favorites to sign him.
Brewer, 31, played for Oklahoma City’s head coach Billy Donovan at the University of Florida. While he did not have a huge role for the Lakers this season, the forward can provide immediate value when cutting to the basket on offense. Former NBA coach George Karl once called Brewer “the best cutter” in the league.
Note that he has not missed on a cutter (5-for-5) on a short shot clock of four seconds or less during his campaign with the Lakers this year, per Synergy Sports.
Despite their efficiency on this play type, only one team in the league has run cutters less often than the Thunder (5.4 percent frequency) this season. Other than big man Steven Adams and power forward Jerami Grant, injured wing Andre Roberson was the only one on the roster who cut to the basket with any regularity for Donovan.
Brewer was used mostly as a one-on-one scorer and as a spot-up shooter for Los Angeles. But he would help the Thunder on cutters, where he is shooting an impressive 20-for-28 (71.4 percent) from the field overall.
That rate is higher than stars like Giannis Antetokounmpo (70.8 percent) so far this season. While the 31-year-old may have lost a step over the years, he can still compete at a high level and help a team like the Thunder that could use more depth.