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Pear tree sent to Oklahoma City 

French Boston pivot Vincent Poirier was sent to Oklahoma City in exchange for money and a 2021 draft second round. The former Euroleague top rebounder is hoping to revive the Thunder after a season of apprenticeship with the Celtics.

French Boston pivot Vincent Poirier was sent to Oklahoma City in exchange for money and a 2021 draft second round. The former Euroleague top rebounder is hoping to revive the Thunder after a season of apprenticeship with the Celtics.

In the aftermath of the draft, the NBA franchises are busy forming their squad for the 2020-21 season, which will begin on December 22, by making exchanges. And Thursday evening, Vincent Poirier was at the center of the debates. The 27-year-old French pivot, who signed for two years in Boston in 2019, was sent to Oklahoma City by the Celtics, in exchange for a sum of money and a second-round pick of the 2021 draft.

Last week, the former best rebounder in the Euroleague with Vitoria had confided that he did not want to relive a second season like the first, at the end of the bench, and that he preferred to leave if that should be the case. Obviously, Boston coach Brad Stevens will not count on him more in 2020-21, and the Massachusetts franchise preferred to exchange the French player.

Two French at the Thunder

Last season, rookie Poirier played just 22 regular season games, averaging 1.9 points and 2 rebounds in 6 minutes. During the play-offs in the Orlando bubble, he was only entitled to 109 seconds against Toronto in the second round (he then left the bubble a few days when he became a dad). In lack of playing time, the French had also been sent to G-League before the break linked to the coronavirus pandemic, and had turned 16.3 points, 9 rebounds and 3 blocks on average with the Maine Red Claws.

The native of Clamart will therefore discover the Western Conference, and a franchise that foiled the predictions last season, finishing fifth after losing its star Russell Westbrook. At the Thunder he will compete with Steven Adams, Mike Muscala and Nerlens Noel, unless other exchanges take place by then. He will also find a Frenchman, Théo Maledon, just drafted.

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