In a time where the OKC Thunder are looking to the future, DeVaughn Akoon-Purcell is having an all-time type start to the season for the OKC Blue.
I have already said that DeVaughn Akoon-Purcell is having a tremendous start to the season. He has to be the early front runner for G-League Sixth Man of the Year. His play off the bench has been nothing short of sensational and should be cause for the OKC Thunder to call him up.
After six games he is sitting in fourth all-time for points per game in OKC Blue history, scoring at 22.3 per game. This has him behind only Reggie Jackson who averaged 26.5 points per game in just four appearances, Abdel Nader, who averaged 24.3 per game in three games and Lazar Haywood who averaged 24.0 also in three games.
This is a fairly impressive trio to be behind. Jackson is the starting point guard for the Detroit Pistons. Nader is the one time G-League rookie of the year. Despite his struggles in the varsity squad, Nader has shown his value at the G-League level. Haywood went on to play 72 games in the NBA over three seasons, including one for the OKC Thunder.
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However, the two players behind him show what an accomplishment his scoring is. Jeremy Lamb averaged 21.0 points in 21 games and has gone on to have a successful NBA career spanning 441 games and three clubs.
Likewise, Ramon Sessions, who averaged 20.9 points over 24 games, had a successful NBA career that spanned 691 games over ten seasons and eight teams. Akoon-Purcell is also averaging more points per game than current varsity squad members Hamidou Diallo and Deonte Burton.
Akoon-Purcell has NBA experience, he was a two-way player with the Denver Nuggets last season, playing just seven games. In this time he averaged just 1.0 points and 0.6 rebounds. However, for me, there is a huge asterisk to these numbers.
The Nuggets were the second-best team in the West last season and they were not interested in developing anyone during games as they were in win-now mode. Akoon-Purcell just did not have the opportunities.
What is more impressive about Akoon-Purcell’s performance this season is that it has been off the bench, he has not started a game. This shows that he has bought into the coach’s game plan.
This is where he could be useful for the varsity squad. At times the offense of the OKC Thunder squad can stall. Akoon-Purcell could be a good option to spark the offense as a bench player. It can’t hurt to see what the Thunder has in him.
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