The OKC Thunder fanbase is sitting at the edge of its seat, waiting for the debut of Chet Holmgren. The 2nd overall pick in the 2022 NBA Draft out of Gonzaga suffered a season-ending foot injury last August. He eventually returned to the hardwood during the 2023 summer league in preparation to make his NBA debut during the 2023-24 NBA season. Though, it is not just the Oklahoma City Thunder fanbase that is eager to see Holmgren debut.
While Holmgren has been hurt throughout this past year, he has not been out of mind. This also includes the last few weeks when NBA veterans such as Patrick Beverley praised Chet Holmgren‘s mentality and skill. This has extended to the latest episode of the “Road Trippin'” Podcast with NBA veterans Richard Jefferson, and Channing Frye was joined by current New Orleans Pelicans forward Trey Murphy to discuss Chet Holmgren and new generational big man Victor Wembanyama.
OKC Thunder big man Chet Holmgren continues to receive praise from current and former NBA players.
On the Road Trippin’ Podcast, Channing Frye brought to Trey Murphy’s attention that Frye and Jefferson had the argument of who to take number one right now, Chet Holmgren or Victor Wembanyama, and without hesitation, Murphy replied, “I’m probably going to take Chet [Holmgren]” Jefferson agreed then asked why, to which Murphy explained “Chet has a little bit of grit to him, you can tell he is not soft, he plays with a sort of tenacity that bigs need. Then also, he is very skills. I think he is more polished than Victor is. I feel like [Chet Holmgren] will shoot the ball better.” which prompted NBA Champion Richard Jefferson to jump in and add, “Aggressively! Chet ain’t playing around.”
“Chet is a hooper,” Frye said emphatically, adding Chet Holmgren is the type of player. “I want to just go play.” The segment ended with Richard Jefferson pointing out how valuable spending last year with the OKC Thunder organization was for Holmgren as we wait for his on-court NBA debut. “He is going to show up, and I would not be surprised if he has a chance at Rookie of the Year,” the NBA Champion ended his rant with.
Richard Jefferson is a top-15 pick that has not only won an NBA Championship but has spent his 17-year NBA career around some of the best players to ever play the game. A list that includes the likes of LeBron James, Steph Curry, Klay Thompson, Kyrie Irving, Kevin Love, Dirk Nowitzki, Tim Duncan, and more.
While NBA fans poke and prod at Chet Holmgren’s frame and question his ability to not only play center but thrive in the league in general, those who have already played in the league do not seem to worry about his ability to play in the league.