2 Thunder players who could be cut from the playoff rotation

Which Oklahoma City Thunder players may see a reduced role during the postseason?

Oklahoma City Thunder v Brooklyn Nets
Oklahoma City Thunder v Brooklyn Nets / Al Bello/GettyImages
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Jaylin Williams

Main reason: Defensive woes

Jaylin Williams shoots roughly 36 percent on catch-and-shoot attempts from beyond the arc and possesses desirable playmaking ability in dribble handoffs and short rolls.

Not only does his extended range pull opposing rim protectors away from the basket, but he has the ability to keep the ball moving and frequently finds cutters. His offensive value is undeniable, although the non-existent paint scoring does limit the Thunder’s high ball-screen versatility.  

However, Williams struggles mightily to both anchor the paint and snag rebounds given his limited vertical athleticism and lackluster size. That’s essentially a death sentence in a Western Conference filled with elite slashers and dominant interior bigs.

The defensive concerns are too great for his offensive production to compensate, especially since the Thunder’s explosive offense does not need Williams’ skill set to thrive. 

Kenrich Williams has surprisingly held his own at center over the past two seasons, while veteran Bismack Biyombo boosts their rebounding and rim protection to a higher degree.

Therefore, they probably share the backup center role throughout the postseason, thus reducing Williams’ role to a minimum. He may see action in certain matchups or if the Thunder decide to run a two-big lineup, which allows Holmgren to offset his interior weaknesses.

Do not be shocked if “J-Will” fails to come near his regular season volume though.