The Oklahoma City Thunder have been preparing for the 2022 NBA Draft for months, spending this past season worrying about development and draft position rather than winning games. After being rewarded in the NBA Draft Lottery with the 2nd overall selection in the NBA Draft, Sam Presti had his pick of every prospect in the draft besides Paolo Banchero who went to Orlando. The OKC Thunder General Manager, who has never missed in the top five of the draft, selected Chet Holmgren, Center out of Gonzaga.
The Orlando Magic pulled off one of the best smoke screens in NBA History by keeping their top overall pick under wraps throughout the entire draft process. Everyone believed Auburn’s Jabari Smith Jr would be the first player off the board in the 2022 NBA Draft before the Magic pulled a fast one. That left Sam Presti to pick between Jabari Smith Jr and Chet Holmgren. Though, the Thunder did not change course, still with Chet Holmgren with the second selection.
OKC Thunder select Chet Holmgren with 2nd overall pick in 2022 NBA Draft
The Oklahoma City Thunder selected the seven-foot big man who could revolutionize the sport. While Holmgren comes with some red flags, mainly his frame, this is an instance of placing your trust in Sam Presti, who has been perfect when selecting at the top of drafts.
Chet Holmgren shot 40 percent from distance as a Freshman at Gonzaga, while providing coast-to-coast ball handling off of rebounds, elite shot-blocking, fantastic off-ball defense, and a hint of playmaking unseen with big-men like this.
Coming in at 7’0 195-pounds, fans have been worried about how his game will translate, but he plays exactly how the Thunder want him to in their five-out, fast-pace, grab-and-go system.
Oklahoma City fans will get their first glimpse of Chet Holmgren during the NBA Summer League beginning July 5th when the team takes on the Jazz to open up the Salt Lake City circuit.