Josh Giddey begged Sam Presti to let him play in the NBA Summer League

Chet Holmgren #7 of the Oklahoma City Thunder speaks with teammate Josh Giddey #3. (Photo by Alex Goodlett/Getty Images)
Chet Holmgren #7 of the Oklahoma City Thunder speaks with teammate Josh Giddey #3. (Photo by Alex Goodlett/Getty Images) /

The Oklahoma City Thunder saw Josh Giddey dazzle the Salt Lake City and Vegas floor during July’s NBA Summer League despite his successful rookie season that saw him win each of the Western Conference Rookie of the Month awards that he was eligible for, and it caught the eye of 76ers head coach Doc Rivers that Giddey still wanted to play in the Summer.

Summer League was an exciting time for the Oklahoma City Thunder. Jalen Williams, Josh Giddey, Ousmane Dieng, and Chet Holmgren all shared the floor and the instant connection between Giddey and Holmgren was unbelievable. That was some of the best moments in 2022 for the Thunder, and it might not have happened without Josh Giddey begging Thunder General Manager Sam Presti to let him play in the Summer circuit.

The Oklahoma City Thunder saw Josh Giddey put up a fantastic NBA Summer League campaign with 2nd overall pick Chet Holmgren, and while that caught the eye of Doc Rivers, Giddey had to beg Sam Presti to let him play

After the OKC Thunder captured the second overall pick in the 2022 NBA Draft, eventually nabbing Chet Holmgren out of Gonzaga, excitement was abound in Bricktown. It felt like the Thunder were back and the rebuild was worth it.

Then, Giddey and Holmgren teamed up on the Summer League floor where Josh Giddey logged a triple-double and Chet Holmgren dominated.

The original plan was for the sophomore guard to only play in the brief three-game Salt Lake City Summer League circuit, but after the success they had there, Josh Giddey asked Sam Presti to play in Vegas since the former NBL star would be there anyways.

Before the game against the 76ers, head coach Doc Rivers told the assembled media “It stood out that he played in the summer league to me. There are a lot of guys sitting in street clothes who hadn’t had the season he had and I thought that spoke volumes that he wanted to play.”

I asked Josh Giddey about this observation and he told me that he advocated playing in Summer League. “I was meant to play Salt Lake, then I said to Sam [Presti] can I play in Vegas? I just wanted to keep getting familiar with the new guys that we had, building that chemistry. I played the first game [in Vegas] and as soon as I got off the court I texted Sam [Presti] again trying to get him to let me play another game but I knew that was going to be my last one.”

Giddey added, “just hooping, I knew I was going to be in Vegas so while I was there I wanted to play, be on the floor with the guys, try to help the young guys integrate to the team so, I mean, it was fun, I love playing in Vegas, it is a fun environment to play in so I definitely enjoyed that.”

Josh Giddey is in the midst of a very successful sophomore season that saw him cap off the best month of his career as December came to a close.

Next. Judgement Day looms for the Oklahoma City Thunder. dark