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Thunder coach Billy Donovan supports change in two-way contract rules

Thunder coach Billy Donovan would be in support of adjusting two-way contract rules, specifically how days of NBA service are counted.

“I think one of the things that would be great,” Donovan said before the Thunder’s 105-104 win Sunday at Boston, “is if some of those guys could practice and it not count against them. But I understand that’s not the rule.”

After G League play begins, players on two-way contracts are allowed 45 days with their NBA team. The rest of the time, they spend with the G League affiliate. The definition of “days of service” has already shifted since the introduction of two-way deals in 2017. Originally, travel days counted toward the total, but the rule changed last season.

Practice days still count. So, the Thunder and other teams have opted to cut down their two-way players’ NBA practice days, especially for those players who are playing regular NBA minutes. Thunder rookie Luguentz Dort is in that category. Dort, who signed a two-way contract as an undrafted free agent this past summer, has played 29 games with the Thunder and started 21.

“There were some times where we hadn’t been able to practice with him,” Donovan said, “which I think has not been good for him. It hasn’t been good for us. But we’re trying to save his days, and we’re going to obviously abide by the rules and do what we can to make sure we’re keeping him available to play in games.”

The Thunder and Dort could also negotiate a standard NBA contract, eliminating days of service restrictions and making Dort eligible to play in the postseason.

Related Photos
Oklahoma City's Luguentz Dort (5) during an NBA basketball game between the Oklahoma City Thunder and the San Antonio Spurs at Chesapeake Energy Arena in Oklahoma City, Sunday, Feb. 23, 2020. Oklahoma city won 131-103. [Bryan Terry/The Oklahoman]

Oklahoma City's Luguentz Dort (5) during an NBA basketball game between the Oklahoma City Thunder and the San Antonio Spurs at Chesapeake Energy Arena in Oklahoma City, Sunday, Feb. 23, 2020. Oklahoma city won 131-103. [Bryan Terry/The Oklahoman]

<figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-be4e50c78de2e4e7bdf4a591b35e60cd.jpg" alt="Photo - Oklahoma City's Luguentz Dort (5) during an NBA basketball game between the Oklahoma City Thunder and the San Antonio Spurs at Chesapeake Energy Arena in Oklahoma City, Sunday, Feb. 23, 2020. Oklahoma city won 131-103. [Bryan Terry/The Oklahoman] " title="Oklahoma City's Luguentz Dort (5) during an NBA basketball game between the Oklahoma City Thunder and the San Antonio Spurs at Chesapeake Energy Arena in Oklahoma City, Sunday, Feb. 23, 2020. Oklahoma city won 131-103. [Bryan Terry/The Oklahoman] "><figcaption>Oklahoma City's Luguentz Dort (5) during an NBA basketball game between the Oklahoma City Thunder and the San Antonio Spurs at Chesapeake Energy Arena in Oklahoma City, Sunday, Feb. 23, 2020. Oklahoma city won 131-103. [Bryan Terry/The Oklahoman] </figcaption></figure>
Maddie Lee

Maddie Lee followed an NBA team from Seattle to Oklahoma City, she just took a 10-year detour in between. Lee joined the Oklahoman in October 2018 as a Thunder beat writer, fresh off a stint in Oxford, Miss., where she covered Ole Miss for the... Read more ›

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