The Oklahoma City Thunder won their second straight summer league game against the Memphis Grizzlies, 87-71.
After a smashing debut in the summer competition that dominated the NBA discourseno. 2 pick Chet Holmgren kinda came back to earth with a decent performance.
Holmgren looked tired in the second half and after playing a total of 46 minutes in the span of 24 hours, he is likely to sit out Thursday’s Salt Lake City final against the Philadelphia 76ers†
Josh Giddey and Jalen Williams were the other two players who stood out outside of Holmgren. Giddey continues to show that he is too talented to play league games in the summer as he grabbed a triple double and Williams continues to score efficiently.
Let’s take a look at the player numbers as the Thunder win their second game in as many days.
Chet Holmgren: B
Holmgren had a calmer game, as he finished with just 11 points on 3-for-11 shooting, 12 rebounds and two blocks.
The biggest talking point that comes out of this game for Holmgren is his coming into possession of a few belongings of Grizzlies two-way player Kenny Lofton Jr. – who is 6 feet and weighs 280 pounds.
The biggest criticism of Holmgren throughout the draft was his skinny frame, as a popular opinion was that he was too skinny to withstand NBA competition.
While that’s probably true, there aren’t enough big guys with low post-banging that would abuse Holmgren all game long and those who would already be MVP-quality players who would get theirs anyway. Some of those players include Zion Williamson, Giannis Antetokounmpo, Joel Embiid and Nikola Jokic.
Lofton Jr. who outsmarts Holmgren on a few postal possessions should not be presented as more than what it is. Although Lofton Jr. deserves the credit of making it to the No. 2 pick, it shouldn’t be seen as a sign of bad things to come.
Will Holmgren compete against guys with a significant weight advantage? Surely. Are there enough players in the league to make that a serious impediment to Holmgren? Not really. Will Holmgren gradually gain weight and muscle over time if he is exposed to some of the best exercise programs and dietitians? Who knows, but the chance is there.
Josh Giddey: A+
Giddey was the best player on the floor for the Thunder, as he finished with 14 points, 10 assists and 10 rebounds to rack up a triple-double. Giddey also shot a healthy 7-of-15 from the field.
Giddey is just way too good to play in the summer league. He will likely be out sooner rather than later to avoid unnecessary injury risks. In any case, it’s nice to see him starting to develop a little chemistry with Holmgren.
Jalen Williams: A
Jalen Williams continues to impress as the 21-year-old finished with 16 points on an efficient 5-for-9 shooting. In two summer league games, Williams has scored 33 points from 13-of-20 shootings (65 percent).
This is to be expected from a player who was considered finished rather than raw. Williams has shown that he is a great off-ball cutter and is also able to get to the paint and finish around the rim.