TODAY |

Steven Adams 'available' for trade as Thunder look to free up salary space - report

Steven Adams is reportedly available for trading by the Oklahoma City Thunder as the Kiwi star's NBA team consider different options to strengthen their squad for a championship campaign next season.

Since the Toronto Raptors beat the Golden State Warriors last week to win their first championship and end the current season, the offseason has already gotten off to a fiery start with two big trades.

The Los Angeles Lakers traded multiple assets to acquire All Star Anthony Davis to join LeBron James and the Utah Jazz managed to acquire Mike Conley to strengthen their backcourt.

The moves have inside reporters believing more big moves could be on the cards and Adams' name is once again doing the rounds.

Sports Illustrated's Jake Fischer said on Twitter this morning the Thunder are looking at options.

"Oklahoma City has increased its efforts this afternoon to shed salary along with the No 21 pick [in the draft] en route to dodging luxury tax, league sources say," Fischer wrote. "

"Steven Adams, Andre Roberson, Dennis Schroeder all very available at the moment."

Of the three named, Adams' contract is currently the highest moving into the next season where he will be owed US$25.8 million.

Schroder is the next highest at US$15.5 million and Roberson is owed US$10.7 million.

ESPN's Zach Lowe also mentioned in his recent podcast that Adams was on the market.

"Chris Paul, Clint Capela, Steven Adams … all of these guys would not seem moveable for value, right?

"But they're the guys that are gonna be on the market and the league is just gonna do a complete 180 in the next two weeks and maybe there will be a market for those players."

Adams' name keeps coming up for the Thunder after another poor finish to their season where they were eliminated in the first round of the NBA playoffs.

Adams struggled to have an impact in the series loss to the Portland Trail Blazers which acclaimed sports journalist Bill Simmons said at the time was unacceptable.

"The guy they are going to have to trade is Adams who has been really, really disappointing … not only in this series but down the stretch too," Simmons said on his podcast.

"This is a series where he is by far the best big man and he's not really having an impact on it. I've seen nothing from him this series.

"I don't know what kind of physical shape he's in but that's the way they have to think. Adams is probably the fall guy coming out of this because they are not going to break up Russell Westbrook and Paul George."

In 80 games for OKC last season, Adams averaged career-highs in rebounds and assists but his points-per-game remained at 13.9 and his free throw shooting - an area he is criticised for - went down five points to an even 50 per cent.

The next big round of trades could come tomorrow at the NBA draft where Duke prodigy Zion Williamson is expected to be the first pick by the New Orleans Pelicans.

Steven Adams looks up during an NBA game. Source: Getty