Why Scotty Hopson is a chance at making the OKC Thunder roster

What we saw from Scotty Hopson in his six games with the OKC Blue showed that he has a chance to make the OKC Thunder roster.

Fresh from a season playing for the New Zealand Breakers in the Australian NBL, Scotty Hopson re-signed with the OKC Blue. The way he played in both leagues made it clear that he is looking for a roster spot with the OKC Thunder.

During his time with the Breakers, Hopson averaged 19.7 points, 5.8 rebounds, 4.3 assists, and 1.0 steals in 31.0 minutes per game. He shot the ball well, going at 47.6 percent from the floor and 39.6 percent from deep.

Due to the NBL being a lesser league than the NBA, these numbers do come into question. However, as a recent preseason match featuring RJ Hampton demonstrated, the NBL is a solid league. On top of that, imports in the league tend to be targeted by the opposition.

Why the NBL numbers are relevant to the OKC Thunder.

Australians have a tendency to play hard. Terrance Ferguson played a season in Australia and found it tough to score. Putting Hopson’s numbers in perspective he averaged 4.7 points per game. This puts Hopson’s numbers into perspective.

However, Hopson showed that he was not just good internationally. He came back to the G-League just prior to the premature end of the season thanks to COVID-19. He played six games, averaging 18.5 points, 3.2 rebounds, and 3.3 assists.

Hopson was able to score with an incredibly high level of efficiency. He shot the ball at 59.2 percent from the field and 48.6 percent from deep. Six games is a small sample six, but Hopson should at least get a training camp deal with the OKC Thunder.

Hopson also has NBA experience, he played two games in 2013-14 for the Cleveland Cavaliers and one game with the Dallas Mavericks in 2017-18. He did not make a field goal in these games. He did make it to the line four times, hitting two of them.

His game has matured during his time overseas and also in his three years with the G-League. At the age of 31, this is probably his last chance to make it in the NBA. As a result, he is going to play even harder at every opportunity to show he is worth a shot.

At 6’7″ Hopson could be the perfect replacement for Deonte Burton on the roster as it is unlikely the OKC Thunder will pick up Burton’s team option. Hopson is a much better 3-point shooter and could help space the floor if Danilo Gallinari does not play for the Thunder next season.