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Thunder's Presti: 'I missed' on Hayward trade

Zach Beeker / National Basketball Association / Getty

Oklahoma City Thunder general manager Sam Presti acknowledged on Tuesday that Gordon Hayward's half-season with the club didn't work out following the veteran's trade-deadline acquisition.

"I missed on that," Presti said Tuesday at his end-of-season press conference, according to Clemente Almanza of The Thunder Wire. "That's on me. But I'm learning. Trying to learn this team ... Just trying to be a great observer of this team as it's going through its paces ... I don't think I read that one perfect."

The Thunder parted with Vasilije Micic, Tre Mann, and Davis Bertans, plus two second-round picks to nab Hayward and his expiring $33-million deal from the Charlotte Hornets in February. However, the 34-year-old never seemed to find his footing in Oklahoma City, where he was expected to add to their wing depth while providing an experienced voice to a young squad.

Following a near-two-month layoff for a calf strain, Hayward debuted for the Thunder on Feb. 22 - a 22-point win over the Los Angeles Clippers. However, he finished scoreless in just over 13 minutes, collecting only four rebounds and taking just two shots. He went on to average a mere 5.3 points per game with Oklahoma City and was seldom used in the playoffs, finishing without a point in seven appearances.

During the Thunder's exit interviews earlier this month, a day after they were eliminated in six games by the Dallas Mavericks in the Western Conference semifinals, Hayward delivered a candid assessment of his short Thunder stint and suggested he believed he was assuming a bigger role.

"I feel, as a player, I have a lot to offer," he told reporters. "Just wasn't really given much of an opportunity to do that. I thought I would be given that opportunity."

Though a small sample size, the former Butler standout was at least efficient from distance, converting 15-of-29 total 3-point attempts (51.7%) with Oklahoma City.

Hayward will become a free agent for the third time in his 14-year career this summer. He signed a four-year, $120-million deal with Charlotte as part of a sign-and-trade agreement with the Boston Celtics in 2020.

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