OKC Thunder: NBA Draft big board 2.0 – Top 30 prospects

LaMelo Ball of the Hawks and RJ Hampton (Photo by Anthony Au-Yeung/Getty Images)
LaMelo Ball of the Hawks and RJ Hampton (Photo by Anthony Au-Yeung/Getty Images) /
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OKC Thunder
Onyeka Okongwu #21 of the USC Trojans OKC Thunder (Photo by Jayne Kamin-Once/Getty Images) /

Onyeka Okongwu, USC, 6’9, 245 pounds, 19 years old

The Trojans’ big man is the highest riser this season. He was not on many people’s radar entering this season, and now almost every NBA Draft expert has him as a lock to go within the lottery. The USC freshman posted 16 points, eight rebounds, and a pair of swats per game.

Okongwu has proven to be an amazing on-ball defender at the college level. You can count on him to give you everything he has every night. He is the rare player that embraces and loves to do the dirty work while having an all-star potential skillset.

The best way to say it is to give him Nick Collison‘s heart and hustle with All-Star level talent. He not only is a fantastic finisher, with a feathery touch around the rim, but he can slam it home with defenders hanging off of him.

Not only does he have a great ability to finish at the rim, and even displays great post play, when you see him dribble you would think he is a guard. With the outstanding IQ that gives him a rare ability to command an offense from down low. His outlet passes will have some of the older generations calling him the second coming of Wes Unseld.

While he is the best post defender in the draft, you do not collect two blocks a game without being obsessed with getting the rejection. That obsession frequently puts him out of position or even worse makes him commit a foul. As long as he realizes there is more to defense than the block numbers, the big man with a 7’1 wingspan could be a Rudy Gobert level defender.

While he played center in college, some wonder if he will need to transition to the four spot given his size. Lucky for him, he has the versatility and the offensive game to do so.

In my eyes, no matter which NBA team selects him, they can mold him into whatever player they want him to be. He could remain this size, or even shed a little bit of weight and become a lockdown defender at the power forward spot, or he can add weight and do that same thing from the center spot.