Jerami Grant poised to become OKC Thunder x-factor this season

Jerami Grant, OKC Thunder (Photo by Zach Beeker/NBAE via Getty Images)
Jerami Grant, OKC Thunder (Photo by Zach Beeker/NBAE via Getty Images) /
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NEW ORLEANS, LA – APRIL 01: Jerami Grant
NEW ORLEANS, LA – APRIL 01: Jerami Grant /

What the future holds

Jerami Grant earned himself a three year, 27 million dollar contract thanks to his efforts in the 2017-18 season. That’s not the only thing to go his way during the offseason. Carmelo Anthony got traded to the Hawks about three weeks ago, thereby leaving a vacant spot in the starting lineup.

Jerami Grant could be the Thunder’s new starting power forward. If he improves his 3-point shooting and manages to drain threes with any sort of consistency, he would be a perfect fit.

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A starting lineup of Russell Westbrook, Andre Roberson, Paul George, Jerami Grant, and Steven Adams would be free of any defensive holes. A lineup like that has the length, athleticism, and mobility to be one of the very best defensive units in the NBA. It would pose a matchup nightmare for their opponents.

If his 3-point shooting does not improve much, however, then he should be coming off the bench instead because if he were to start, the OKC Thunder would be facing a significant spacing problem. It would also mean Jerami’s production will take a massive hit.

If he were to come off the bench, then Billy Donovan would be getting the most out of him on offense. He would also form a formidable rim protection duo with new/former teammate Nerlens Noel.

Regardless of whether he starts or not, he will be getting the lion’s share of minutes at power forward. He’ll also be a mainstay in closing lineups thanks to his all-around ability.

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Jerami Grant is the Thunder’s X-Factor. The team will go as he goes. If he can sustain that level of play consistently over the course of the upcoming season, then the OKC Thunder will definitely be a team to look out for.

Note: all video courtesy of youtube via NBA game footage