3 Things Australia’s FIBA World Cup stint reveals about Thunder players

Josh Giddey of Australia (Photo by Morgan Hancock/Getty Images)
Josh Giddey of Australia (Photo by Morgan Hancock/Getty Images) /
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OKC Thunder
Jack White of the Australian Boomers Photo by Emily Barker/Getty Images) /

The OKC Thunder will continue to evaluate Jack White after a hit-and-miss World Cup run

OKC Thunder signed Jack White last July to a two-year veteran minimum contract, adding depth to the forward position and providing additional body for small-ball lineups.

White averaged 21 points, close to ten rebounds, and two assists in 14 G-League games for the Grand Rapids Gold last year.

In the FIBA World Cup, White’s numbers are pretty much the same as his Nuggets stats. In about eight minutes per game, he averaged two points, two rebounds, and less than one assist per game as one of the second-stringers for the Boomers.

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His impact, however, must be considered, primarily through the eye test. Having the frame to battle for boards and guard the paint, White showed his toughness to deter shots, grab rebounds, and man the color for the Boomers, albeit on minimal minutes throughout the tournament.

However, his worst game was a huge downer. Against Germany, White committed four turnovers and snagged two rebounds in just nine minutes of action.

That minutes-to-turnovers ratio made the OKC Thunder faithful question, at least for a matter of days, his value as a potential player for the OKC Thunder.

It was the worst game of the World Cup for White. But evaluating him for just one game would be an injustice. He only missed one shot in the entire tournament. Though, on top of a low sample size, Jack White was often spoon fed chances. While he took advantage of the opportunity, he was mainly a play finisher, not a play creator.

Perhaps the biggest standout from Jack White’s FIBA tournament run was the energy and effort he brought to the Boomers each game. For the OKC Thunder, who could enter the season with him as their 15th man, getting a player that you know you can expect to be prepared to play in games and bring juice could be enough to sway things.

The expectations for him are still tamed. White’s future remains uncertain for the OKC Thunder. All that we can wait for now are his training camp performances, which could indicate his place in the OKC Thunder’s roster for next season. For now, he remains a valuable body worth a roster spot.

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