Australia has been a hotbed of basketball talents. From NBA champions Luc Longley, Patty Mills, and Matthew Dellavedova to Ben Simmons, Joe Ingles, and Matisse Thybulle, the list of Australian NBA players has risen exponentially as the game goes global. Josh Giddey is the next in line.
Former first overall pick Andrew Bogut — the first Australian to ever reach that feat —tab Josh Giddey as the greatest Australian player in the NBA.
Former NBA big man and Champion, Andrew Bogut, offers high praise for Josh Giddey.
“He’s going to be the greatest Australian player to play in the NBA,” said Bogut — an NBA champion and a former rookie of the year — in an interview with Sportal’s Christos Tsaltas. “He’s gonna break a lot of records for Australian players with points, rebounds, assists, and all those things.”
Bogut’s forecast may be too early to qualify, but it is not far-fetched. In his first year in the league, Josh Giddey became the youngest player to record a triple-double at 19 years and 84 days. He also holds the bill as the second, third, and fourth youngest player to log a triple-double after replicating the feat three more times a little over a month later.
Garnering a total of eight career triple-doubles already, Josh Giddey surpassed Magic Johnson for the most triple-doubles by a player before turning 21 years old. Giddey has also become the youngest player to tally a triple-double with more than 15 assists after putting up a stat line of 17 points, 11 rebounds, and 17 assists in an OKC Thunder win over the Golden State Warriors in March.
With all these accolades on merely 130 games played across two seasons, it is tough to argue what Bogut sees on Giddey. “His development has been sensational. He’s always had the ability to rebound and pass,” said Bogut.
“He’s been great. Josh was labeled as not athletic and not fast enough; ‘What is he, a one or a two?’ He’s a basketball player. He just knows how to play,” explained Bogut, who played 14 seasons in the NBA, most notably for the Golden State Warriors, where he won a title in 2015.
From someone who was once part of a young and growing dynasty alongside Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson, and Draymond Green, Bogut also discerns great things ahead for the Thunder.
“I’m also excited for him and OKC. I think OKC has a very young and talented team that, I think, in a year or two, is going to be one of the teams to beat in the Western Conference — especially when they go out and sign maybe another star or another veteran that can come and help,” Bogut enthused. “I think they have a chance to be very good.”
For that to be realized, Giddey, together with the rest of the Thunder’s young core, needs to step on another gear of play, which Bogut thinks is happening sooner rather than later.
“I think the scoring was the biggest question, and he’s proven he can get to the paint. His 3-point shot is getting better and better. He’s putting a lot of work into his 3-point shot this season again. He’s still not where he wants to be, but he’s getting better, better and better. I’m excited.” he said.
Praises like these validate what the Thunder organization and its faithful already know — OKC has a monumental piece in Josh Giddey.