Every season, each NBA team rolls out a standard 15-man roster as well as two players under two-way contracts. The two players on these deals have the opportunity to split time between the NBA and the G League.
This has paid dividends for the Thunder in three straight seasons, as they’ve promoted one of their two-way players to a full NBA deal by the end of the year. This doesn’t happen with every team around the league, but Oklahoma City has developed talent well enough to make this happen.
Deonte Burton, Lu Dort and Moses Brown have been converted from two-way to full-time NBA deals in the past three seasons respectively.
While Burton didn’t ultimately work out long-term, Dort has become a franchise cornerstone and Brown was later used as sweetener in the Al Horford for Kemba Walker trade that resulted in the Thunder gaining extra draft capital.
Shortly after the 2021 NBA Draft, Oklahoma City signed one of their second-round picks to their first two-way deal for the upcoming season. The No. 55 overall pick, Aaron Wiggins was set to start his career developing in both the G League with the OKC Blue and the NBA with the Thunder.
Wiggins played three college seasons at Maryland before making the jump to the NBA. In his final year, he started in all but one game, averaging 14.5 points, 5.8 rebounds and 2.5 assists per contest while shooting 35.6 percent from deep.
A quality scorer, Wiggins has the potential to be an immediate offensive contributor, both at the NBA and G League levels. He showed flashes of this at NBA Summer League, where he averaged 11.2 points, 4.8 rebounds and 2.4 assists per game with the Thunder.
He struggled from deep, converting on only four of his 20 attempts from three. However, the mechanics of his shot are not concerning, bringing optimism to his 3-point ability, especially considering his college numbers.
Wiggins is an older rookie at 22 years old, but is certainly experienced. While many rookies come into the NBA after just one college season, he has many high-level games under his belt.
He’s only played five games in a Thunder uniform to this point after summer league, but Wiggins could evolve into a nice bench scorer for the team for years to come.
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On Wednesday, the Thunder announced that Josh Hall would be filling the second two-way spot for the 2021-22 season. This will be the second consecutive season for Hall to be on this type of deal after being an undrafted free agent signing for the Thunder in 2020.
Hall was injured for the majority of the G League Bubble last season, so ultimately got most of his playing time with the Thunder as a rookie. He took the floor in 21 games, averaging 4.1 points, 2.8 rebounds and 1.3 assists per contest.
If he’s able to stay healthy, Hall can truly make a positive impact in Oklahoma City going forward. Still just 20 years old, he’s 6-foot-9 and is a superb athlete.
He was able to showcase his skills in NBA Summer League last week with the Thunder as he produced 6.6 points and 4.6 rebounds per game.
For Hall, his NBA success is going to come down to staying healthy and developing a consistent jumper. Last season as a rookie, he only converted on 10.8 percent of his threes, although it was a small sample size. Hall only attempted 37 shots from beyond the arc last season.
Either way, with more opportunity for playing time this season with the Blue, it wouldn’t be surprising to see Hall flourish. He skipped college to go straight to the NBA, so he is still a fairly raw prospect. Overall, another season being a professional will be crucial for his growth as a player.
When the G League season kicks off, all eyes will be on Wiggins and Hall as they look to develop their games and become full-time NBA players.
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