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OKC Thunder ready to see what Reggie Jackson can become in Sixth Man role

Backup point guard is entering a crucial year in his development.
by Anthony Slater Published: November 5, 2013
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photo - Oklahoma Thunder guard Reggie Jackson (15) drives against Phoenix Suns' Eric Bledsoe during the first half of an NBA preseason basketball game, Tuesday, Oct. 22, 2013, in Phoenix. (AP Photo/Matt York)
Oklahoma Thunder guard Reggie Jackson (15) drives against Phoenix Suns' Eric Bledsoe during the first half of an NBA preseason basketball game, Tuesday, Oct. 22, 2013, in Phoenix. (AP Photo/Matt York)

“He's tough, man. He can play,” Martin continued. “Just how relentless he is, he's got a chance to be a sixth man that comes in and gets buckets on the attack and just be something really special in that role.”

And when he takes the floor, it allows the other Thunder bench players to fall back into their more natural slots, working off Jackson's playmaking skills.

Nick Collison, OKC's elder statesman, has worked with a variety of bench talent in the past, most notably Harden. When asked if Jackson fits that sixth man mold, Collison said: “He has all the tools.”

“It'll be good,” Collison said. “Reggie will give us a guy that can break some people down in that second group and hopefully create some shots for everybody else.”

Throughout the early stages of his career, Jackson's premier skill has been a unique ability to finish on the drive. Last season, his 74.2-percent conversion rate at the rim ranked near the top among guards.

“He can shoot with either hand, has a good left and right, plus the floater,” Brooks said. “And he uses the rim as an extra protector.”

But moving forward, his long-term development will hinge on the growth of his other skills. His shooting, his passing and his ability to take over in key spurts off the bench.

“In the playoffs, he really showcased under the circumstances that he can really lead an offensive unit,” Martin said. “Which you have to do in that second unit. You have to be an offensive-minded player.”

Internally, there's plenty of belief that he can. Now we'll start to find out if he will.

by Anthony Slater
Thunder Beat Writer
Anthony Slater started on the Thunder beat in the summer of 2013, joining after two years as NewsOK.com's lead sports blogger and web editor. A native Californian, Slater attended Sonoma State for two years before transferring to Oklahoma State in...
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