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Oklahoma City Thunder: Ten prospects OKC could target in Thursday's NBA Draft

Thunder General Manager Sam Presti holds the 21st and 29th overall picks in Thursday night’s draft and, with them, he will have plenty of options.
by Anthony Slater Published: June 24, 2014

Trade up or trade out. Package the picks for a veteran or stay put.

Thunder General Manager Sam Presti holds the 21st and 29th overall picks in Thursday night’s draft and, with them, he will have plenty of options. But for now, let’s assume Presti utilizes at least one of those selections.

Who might be around in that range? Who would fit a Thunder need in those slots? Here are 10 guys to keep an eye on:

Tyler Ennis, Syracuse point guard

He’d have to stumble a bit from his current projections, which place him somewhere in the mid- to late teens. But because of the top-to-bottom talent, that’s going to happen to somebody in this draft. And if it’s Ennis, that would seem to be a great fit for the Thunder, who now find themselves in the market for another point guard. At only 19, he showed a great feel for the game during his lone year at Syracuse, compiling a 3.2 assist-to-turnover ratio. If he falls, OKC would be lucky to snag him.

Adreian Payne, Michigan State power forward

He’s a skilled and mature player from a winning program — two qualities the Thunder brass typically loves. Plus, as a stretch four in a league moving toward those types of players, he fills a need. At 6-foot-10, he averaged 7.3 rebounds and hit 42 percent of his 3-pointers last season. Downside: Payne’s already 23, meaning he’s older than five current Thunder players. He could provide an immediate impact, but his developmental clock has long been ticking. He probably wouldn’t last to the 29th pick. But there’s a decent shot he’s still there at 21.

Kyle Anderson, UCLA small forward

Anderson’s listed as a small forward and will likely play one of the two forward positions in the NBA. But even at 6-foot-9, he plays more like a point guard. And because of the show Boris Diaw (who has a similar game) just put on in the Finals, his stock is reportedly rising. Although he lacks high-level speed and strength, Anderson is ripe with skill. Great vision, good ballhandler, adept passer. He averaged 14.6 points, 8.8 rebounds and 6.5 assists for a good UCLA team last season. Doesn’t fit a huge need on the Thunder, but seems like a skill set that could mesh with talent around him.

Clint Capela, Switzerland power forward

Capela has been compared to Serge Ibaka, which is high praise for the 19-year-old Swiss forward. But it’s still way too early in his development to project that out. At 6-11 with a 7-4 wingspan, he’s very fluid and mobile for his size. He gets off the ground quickly, runs the floor well and skies for some impressive blocks and dunks, making his YouTube reel one of the best in the draft. But he was a role player in Europe last season, getting around 20 minutes a night, and it sounds like he’s still pretty raw. A draft-and-stash possibility, and we know how the Thunder loves those.

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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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