Oklahoma City Thunder: Michael Carter-Williams could be in play if OKC passes on a big man in NBA Draft

Thunder general manager Sam Presti has a history of surprises on draft night. And so while most everyone assumes the Thunder will be drafting a big man, it's not out of the realm of possibilities that OKC actually will go small.
by Darnell Mayberry Published: June 15, 2013
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Much of the rave about Michael Carter-Williams is his size.

But at 6-foot-6, surely he's at least four inches shorter than any player the Thunder might want.

But what if he's not?

What if the Thunder takes a pass on a big man in the upcoming NBA Draft?

If that's the route Oklahoma City chooses, Carter-Williams, the point guard from Syracuse, could be in play with the 12th overall pick.

Thunder general manager Sam Presti has a history of surprises on draft night. From selecting Russell Westbrook fourth overall in 2008, to the mystery surrounding the eventual selection of James Harden with the third overall pick in 2009, to trading up for Cole Aldrich in 2010, to the head-scratching selection of Reggie Jackson in 2011.

And so while most everyone assumes the Thunder will be drafting a big man, it's not out of the realm of possibilities that OKC actually will go small.

Relatively speaking.

Because nothing about Carter-Williams' stature is small.

He measured at 6-foot-5 and three-quarter inches at the draft combine, and the skills he possesses within his considerable frame hasn't been seen at the point guard position since Shaun Livingston.

Scouts and front office executives seem to be mesmerized by Carter-Williams' size and potential, which is why he's projected to be taken as early as eighth. Best of all, Carter-Williams combines savvy with his size. He proved to be extremely effective setting up teammates this season, either by breaking down his defender and drawing help defense before dumping off passes or driving and kicking out to shooters.

“He understands the game,” Syracuse coach Jim Boeheim told The New York Times late in the season. “He sees the game, and he's got a great feel for the game.”



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