Hamidou Diallo serves up charity in New York and dishes on trade shock

Hamidou Diallo, OKC Thunder (Photo by David Dow/NBAE via Getty Images)
Hamidou Diallo, OKC Thunder (Photo by David Dow/NBAE via Getty Images) /

Hamidou Diallo is active this offseason as the OKC Thunder guard spent time in Vegas, is bringing charity to his native New Yorkers and focusing on growing his game. Recently he spoke about the shift of his squad following the surprising trades.

Entering his first offseason OKC Thunder 20 year old shooting guard Hamidou Diallo has a full itinerary. First up Diallo performed with his Thunder club in Vegas at the Summer League. The rest of his offseason is being split between working on growing his game and commitments to charitable events.

It was at some of these events the media caught up with Diallo to get his feelings about the trades of Russell Westbrook and Paul George along with the addition of a former college mate.

The youngster told reporters he was blindsided by the trades of Paul George and Russell Westbrook this month. As per writer Kristian Winfield of the New York Daily News, Diallo spoke of how shocked he was by the news of the trades.

"“No. No idea at all. That really hit home base,” he said after a visit to the National Basketball Players Association summer youth basketball camp on Thursday. “I didn’t know anything. And, I mean, it’s the NBA. That happens. Different players move, sometimes bigger players, sometimes small players. It’s the NBA; it’s a business and you’ve got to look out for yourself.”"

The trades offer the youngster Diallo an opportunity to step up and claim more playing time. And, he’ll be the one guy on the OKC Thunder who stands to benefit from the incoming assets particularly point guard Shai Gilgeous-Alexander who he played with, each in their lone season at Kentucky prior to declaring for the 2018 NBA draft class.

Perhaps the association of the pair will help Diallo who also noted in the Daily News article the fact he wasn’t happy with his minute allocation last season.

"“Last year coming in, I was still looking for minutes and still felt like I deserved more minutes, but things happen, things occur, and it’s basketball.”"

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Diallo’s dissatisfaction can be married to a few factors such as head coach Billy Donovan‘s reluctance to play youngsters consistently or allow them to make mistakes before the vaudeville hook pulled them from games.

But, he also suffered an injury and seemingly hit the rookie wall. The efforts the young wing puts in this summer will go a long way to changing his situation this season. Furthermore, Diallo will benefit from the team losing their top two scorers. More than ever there are opportunities on the floor waiting to be seized.

Following in his peer’s philanthropic footsteps:

In recent weeks Diallo is representing in his native New York community giving back to the youth. The youngster is one of 12 NBA players appearing at the NBPA basketball camps and one shooting coach (Chris “Lethal Shooter” Matthews). Diallo appeared at Basketball City on July 18th.

The youngster followed the NBPA event with his own free basketball camp in Lost Battalion Hall in the infamous Rego Park and his Hami Day Games in Elmhurst at Hoffman Park.  As per his comments to Brian Lewis of the New York Post, Diallo is keen to give back to the youth of Queens.

"“Being a kid from Queens, I wanted to come out to a couple of camps: the NBPA camp, my camp that’s [Friday] and my event that I’m having Saturday, which is like a community give-back,” Diallo said. “Being a kid from Queens, I’m trying to give these kids hope and trying to do what I wish someone would’ve done for me when I was in their shoes.”"

Diallo is a native of LeFrank City in New York which you may recall was well represented in the special sneakers he donned at All-Star weekend when he won the Dunk Contest this past season in Charlotte.

Like many of his OKC Thunder peers Hami is continuing the charitable efforts and he’s balancing his time preparing for the upcoming season where he intends to make a mark. The door is wide open for the youngster, so we await training camp to witness just how much he’s improved.

Next. Vegas observations: Which Thunder players stood out in Summer League?. dark

Fans got a little glimpse of his efforts in Vegas where he was second in scoring (14.8 points) behind Kevin Hervey and led the team in steals (1.5) in his four outings.