Nearly two weeks after being acquired at the trade deadline from the Charlotte Hornets, Oklahoma City Thunder coach Mark Daigneault says Gordon Hayward is expected to make his OKC debut on Thursday against the Los Angeles Clippers, per Andrew Schlecht of The Athletic:

“Mark Daigneault says Gordon Hayward will be available tomorrow against the Clippers.”

Hayward, an established veteran in the NBA, looks to help an otherwise young Thunder team as they look to make a competitive playoff run during the 2023-24 postseason.

Prior to joining the Thunder, the former All-Star was averaging 14.5 points per game on 46.8 percent field-goal and 36.1 percent 3-point shooting. He's also putting up 4.6 rebounds and 4.7 assists per contest.

The Thunder already feature no shortage of talent, however. Shai Gilgeous-Alexander is a legitimate MVP candidate as he's currently leading OKC with 31.1 points per game.

Jalen Williams and Chet Holmgren have also both performed at high levels. Oklahoma City has star-power and depth, making them a true contender. The Western Conference is stacked with talent, though, so adding a player like Gordon Hayward should help their chances of making a deep playoff run.

Thursday night's return to action marks a marquee game on the NBA schedule. The 37-17 Thunder sit in second place in the NBA Western Conference standings. The Clippers, at 36-17, are just a half-game behind OKC as the NBA enters its stretch run.

Surprisingly, the game will not be part of TNT's Thursday night broadcast. The early game is the Phoenix Suns vs. the Dallas Mavericks, while the second game of the doubleheader will feature the Los Angeles Lakers vs. the Golden State Warriors.