Chet Holmgren Wants To End Up With OKC Thunder?

NBA Analysis Network

The Oklahoma City Thunder were one of the winners of the 2022 NBA Draft Lottery when they finished second overall. This is a great place as many people thought that this draft would form a consensus in the top three and the Thunder would be able to win at least one of those players.

Many people believe that Jabari Smith Jr. will eventually take the overall win at the Orlando Magic. That sounds like it’s perfectly fine with The Thunder, who are said to be keeping tabs on Gonzaga’s big man Chet Holmgren.

Sam Vecenie and Ryen Russillo spoke at length about the draft on a recent episode of the Ryen Russillo Podcast. The best fit for Holmgren was debated and both agreed that Oklahoma City was the logical fit.

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Russillo even went one step further, saying that Chet Holmgren and his camp want him drafted there.

“Well, there’s also something that points to his agent, Bill Duffy, a very powerful agent who’s been doing this for a long time. I was told that Duffy and Chet are headed there. They want to go to Oklahoma City because you just mentioned that the players they played up front are thinking about that second contract and the possibilities, and he has a lot more freedom because of the roster in front of him than maybe he would in Orlando … That’s the preference I’ve heard, and it makes a lot of sense from a basketball perspective.”

Based on what the Oklahoma City Thunder have done with recent draft picks, Holmgren fits the mold of the type of player they’re looking for. It also makes sense from a roster perspective, as the Thunder have arguably the clearest path to longer playing time from the start.

The Gonzaga product has unique capabilities that would match the parts already in place. With Shai Gilgeous-Alexander and Josh Giddey in backcourt, it’s about time the Thunder found a complementary play upfront, and Holmgren may be just that.

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It is ahead of Paolo Banchero when it comes to the defensive side of the ball and offers rim protection and distance that would bother even the most skillful finishers. Strength will be an issue early on as Holmgren needs to get stronger to survive in the NBA, but his skills are excellent.

He can play like a guard on offense on the fringes and should be able to find some success at this end of the court if his body fills up. The sky’s the limit for Holmgren as the only real punches against him can all be attributed to size and strength.

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