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Derrick Favors says he’ll exercise $10M player option with Thunder

Oklahoma City Thunder v Sacramento Kings

SACRAMENTO, CA - FEBRUARY 5: Derrick Favors #15 of the Oklahoma City Thunder defends the Sacramento Kings on February 5, 2022 at Golden 1 Center in Sacramento, California. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images Agreement. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 2022 NBAE (Photo by Rocky Widner/NBAE via Getty Images)

NBAE via Getty Images

The Thunder got Derrick Favors in a salary-dump trade with the Jazz last summer. But unlike with many of the veterans acquired during its rebuild, Oklahoma City didn’t flip Favors for even more value.

He just wasn’t good enough and was too highly paid.

Which Favors – who holds a $10,183,800 player option for next season – seems to know.

Favors:

I expect to be back here next year. And, yeah, I’ll probably pick it up.

If he declines his option, Favors almost certainly wouldn’t return to Oklahoma City next year. The 30-year-old doesn’t fit the Thunder’s timeline. So, the first sentence means the second sentence is more than a “probably.”

When he opts in, Favors – Oklahoma City’s highest-paid player – could be useful in a trade with his mid-sized expiring contract. The right team might even place some small value on adding him for center depth, though he’d primarily be included in any deal for salary matching.

If not traded, Favors could also provide value as a veteran mentor in Oklahoma City.