May 16, 2013; Chicago, IL, USA; Michael Carter-Williams is interviewed during the NBA Draft combine at Harrison Street Athletics Facility. Mandatory Credit: Jerry Lai-USA TODAY Sports

NBA Draft Rumors: Russell Westbrook injury has OKC Thunder thinking backup PG?


There is a common misconception floating around the Internet that Russell Westbrook’s injury that he suffered in the first round of the NBA Playoffs exposed a weakness at the backup point guard position.

If anything, one of the only positions that seemed to step up in Westbrook’s absence was the backup point guard as Reggie Jackson had a semi-breakout postseason and Derek Fisher shot out of his mind.

Nevertheless, the rumor now exists that the Thunder may be interested in trading up in the lottery of the upcoming NBA Draft to try and be in position to take a player like Michael Carter-Williams or Shane Larkin.

When Russell Westbrook tore the lateral meniscus in his right knee, the Oklahoma City Thunder’s title hopes crumbled. Playmaking without Westbrook was an issue, a flaw they can rectify by targeting Michael Carter-Williams or Shane Larkin in the draft.

via USA Today

While drafting MCW or Larkin would surely be invited in the Thunder camp, I don’t believe there is a strong feeling that adding to the point guard depth of the roster is particularly necessary.

A combo of Westbrook and Jackson, if both healthy, should prove to be as formidable as any two point guards in the league next year and down the road.

The more visible need that would realistically be able to be cured with a lottery pick in this draft, is a future center. Kendrick Perkins has two years left on his contract and is coming off what was literally the worst playoff performance in the history of the NBA.

Drafting MCW would be exciting. He could turn into a Shaun Livingston type of pro and a player that would probably fit in very well with the Thunder. But is Thunder GM Sam Presti and the Thunder feeling an overwhelming need to draft a point guard in this draft? I doubt that. A future center seems to make more sense.

Tags: Miami Michael Carter-Williams NBA Draft 2013 Oklahoma City Thunder Russell Westbrook Shane Larkin Syracuse