OKC Thunder: How 6 top draft prospects compliment Gilgeous-Alexander

Shai Gilgeous-Alexander #2 of the OKC Thunder drives towards the basket. (Photo by Todd Kirkland/Getty Images)
Shai Gilgeous-Alexander #2 of the OKC Thunder drives towards the basket. (Photo by Todd Kirkland/Getty Images) /
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OKC Thunder
Shai Gilgeous-Alexander #2 of the OKC Thunder (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images) /

Leading up to the 2021 NBA Draft ample analysis has occurred of the top prospects with a particular emphasis on fit. For the OKC Thunder, it’s easy to conclude the team should take the best player available, particularly given the franchise is invested in a rebuilding phase.

But I think it goes beyond that since it’s never too early to start planning where you foresee a player fitting in. Not just in the present, but planning and predicting the fit around your presumed franchise player, Shai Gilgeous-Alexander.

Since OKC will likely never be a “destination” franchise for free agents, it’s doubly important to hit on a player high in the draft. This with the hope the player pans out and signs a rookie extension and enjoys the environment.

Better yet they emulate the Giannis Antetokounmpo path of committing to see the process through and do everything possible to bring a championship to their drafting team.

How top OKC Thunder draft prospects fit with Gilgeous-Alexander

Shai Gilgeous-Alexander is the new “face of the franchise” and by all accounts plans to be around OKC for the long haul. This, with the strong assumption Sam Presti doesn’t buy into the ludicrous trade ideas commonly found on the internet.

With that, let’s dive into the top of the 2021 NBA draft class and examine how six of those top  prospects fit with SGA and what many now call “the timeline.”

Jalen Green

The prospect with the absolute cleanest fit around SGA possible is Jalen Green. The guard would bring high-octane scoring and a natural inclination to put the ball in the bucket that would mesh unbelievably well around SGA’s facilitating skills and scoring ability.

Many analysts call Green the best scorer to hit the draft in years, with the only knock I can recall being his seeming lack of playmaking ability for teammates.

While I hold out hope Green can develop as a playmaker to go along with his uncanny scoring ability, I also believe it would be masked with SGA’s efficiency and give the OKC Thunder a truly devastating backcourt for years to come.

Likelihood OKC Thunder draft prospect:

Not very.

With the Rockets appearing set on Green in the second spot, the OKC Thunder would need to bring to the table an enticing number of draft picks and possibly a promising young player (Darius Bazley?) to make it happen.

As great as Green would look in a Thunder uniform, there are other good fits that likely make more sense to pursue.