Can Thunder build their future around thin constellations?

The very first thing that involves your thoughts whenever you see Chet Holmgren, no. 2 Decide within the Thursday Evening NBA Draft, is that you’ve by no means seen one other human being like him earlier than. He is so impossibly tall and skinny that you just surprise if his physique has any muscle in any respect. His draft firm is Jack Skellington with a 3-point vary.

However because it seems, there’s one other human being precisely like him on the planet – and that individual is his new teammate and hoopelgänger: his string mate Aleksej Pokusevski.

ringerBoco’s Kevin O’Connor as soon as described it as “Essentially the most memorable participant within the NBA,” Whereas ringerc. Kyle Mann not too long ago Chet described it as a “unicorn.however each Evaluate Chit to Buco Which predates this yr’s draft, resulting from its distinctive (nicely, two of a sort) physique kind. They’ve completely different backgrounds: Chet was a five-star recruit usually thought of one of the best agent in his highschool class previous to a profitable yr at Gonzaga. An 18-year-old from Serbia, Boko was primarily taking part in within the Greek second division when the Thunder picked him for seventeenth in 2020. However the two skinny giants have discovered their option to Oklahoma, and so they appear to be attracted to one another regardless of their comparatively low-key enchantment. sway. Now they may type probably the most unimaginable duos. They’re type constellations! Twin twigs! Slendermine!

So what sort of magic is Thunder planning? can they really Constructing the way forward for the NBA from matchstick males? Or are they doomed if a robust wind blows? Let’s dive in.

Who’s skinny?

In keeping with Basketball-Reference, Poku is the second participant in NBA historical past to be at the least 7 ft tall and weigh lower than 200 kilos. (The primary was Boniface N’Dong, who performed 23 video games for the Clippers in 2005-06 at 7 ft 198 kilos.) Holmgren can be third. For comparability, Kevin Durant, the everyday skinny NBA participant, is now listed at 6 ft 10 and 240 kilos. The Chet and Boku are each two inches longer and about 50 kilos lighter.

Each Thunder Bigs are listed at precisely 7 ft, Poku is listed at 190 kilos whereas Chet is a bit heavier at 195. Nevertheless, Holmgren has an extended wingspan – stated to be 7 ft – 6, whereas Poku is at 7 ft 3 – so It might look somewhat extra elongated. Though lighter, Poku feels thicker to me. Each guys are solely 20 years previous so hopefully they’re going to achieve some weight as they mature… however who is aware of? We have by no means seen anybody like both, so we should not anticipate the standard developmental path.

How comparable are Chet and Poku video games?

You may fear that by pairing these two males, the Thunder simply created a repetition. However that does not appear to be an issue in any respect.

Poku and Chet each have extraordinary video games that appear unimaginable of their already unimaginable our bodies. Chet shot 39 p.c of his three in Gonzaga, and whereas Boko wasn’t efficient at taking pictures from depth, he clearly had a stroke. And each starred in YouTube movies excel they Guard Handles. However Poku is greater than a playmaker, typically a shocking spectator with fleeting brilliance out of nowhere. Whereas Shit shoots triples and spreads rapidly with clean crossovers (Well-known for crossing Steve Kory), he in all probability would not make his residing within the NBA getting individuals out of the shuffle.

Holmgren is a middle whose most secure asset is his spectacular defensive potential and edge safety – and with arms which might be even longer than Poku’s broomsticks, it is easy to know why. Poku is difficult to identify, but it surely’s probably not targeted. Nor a defender. Poku will not help Chet – if something, we will see the 2 of them operating a pick-and-roll with Poku the ball handler and Chet making ready the display screen.

Does Thunder have a plan right here?

Apparently, sure. Oklahoma Metropolis has been very intentional about two issues: hoarding draft picks (significantly, they’ve, like, 80 draft picks) and peak achieve. On Thursday evening, they used two extra first-round picks on the lengthy gamers. They had been traded within the eleventh decide to take Osman Dieng, a 6-foot-10 ahead that the scouts imagine has a very excessive upside. They then used the twelfth decide on Jaylin Williams, a 6-foot-6 taking pictures guard with an odd 7ft 2 wingspan. . (That is proper – not solely did the Thunder pair the one two 7-foot, 190-pound guys – they’ve additionally bought Galen/Jalen Williams. Every Thunder must be paired with the opposite.)

The Thunder provides that peak to the workforce that used the quantity 6 decide in final yr’s draft over Josh Gedi, a 6-foot-8 guard who led the workforce in assists as a rookie. It is completely affordable to think about them taking part in formations the place the 6-foot-6 Gilgus Alexander Shay is essentially the most regular sized human. With all these weapons, their protection needs to be impenetrable. Thunder has a imaginative and prescient for the way forward for basketball, and it is bizarre and delightful. Everybody will appear to be an fool inflatable tube man.