Who will Thunder take? Not even Bennett knows
I chatted with Thunder chairman Clay Bennett on Monday. And yes, I asked him the big question. Who will the Thunder draft Thursday?
Bennett said he doesn’t know. And he did say he knew last year that Russell Westbrook would be the choice. No one figured Westbrook would go early in 2008, so general manager Sam Presti was fairly certain Westbrook would be available at No. 4, and sure enough, that’s who the then-Sonics drafted.
This year, uncertainty reigns. Memphis has the second pick. The Grizzlies could conceivably do one of four things: draft Ricky Rubio, Hasheem Thabeet, James Harden or trade down.
Until the Grizzlies show their hand, which they won’t until about 6:45 p.m. Thursday, the Thunder can’t know what it’s going to do, unless Presti has another mystery man like Westbrook stashed away.
If Presti indeed does have a stealth candidate, I’d vote for USC’s DeMar DeRozan, who seems like a young Desmond Mason, wildly athletic, sharp, not much of a shooter but committed to defense. The trouble with DeRozan, the Thunder probably can get him a little lower, so there might be some temptation to trade down. Of course, the same probably occurred with Westbrook last year, and Presti resisted that path.
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