Thunder drafts its own ‘Mr. October'

by Berry Tramel Published: June 23, 2011

Hmm. The Thunder selected Boston College's Reggie Jackson with the 24th pick of the NBA Draft on Thursday night.

Chances are, the Thunder has their own Mister October. You know, a guy who will never see the court once November arrives.

I guess it could be worse. The Thunder could have signed Frank Robinson, the Cal State-Fullerton flash who spent two weeks in training camp with the Atlanta Hawks in 2008.

In a ho-hum draft with the locals drafting in a ho-hum slot, we shouldn't have been expecting much. The days of Sam Presti getting to cherry-pick Kevin Durant, Russell Westbrook or James Harden are long gone.

Outside the lottery, in the catacombs of the draft, you sort of take your chances. Duke's Kyle Singler. Texas' Jordan Hamilton. An international. It's all a crapshoot.

The Thunder brass — both Presti and coach Scotty Brooks — talked up Jackson, which is what they should do.

Brooks said he was “excited” to get Jackson. Presti called it a “luxury” to add Jackson to the roster.

I was hoping the Thunder could take the guy from Montenegro, Nikola Mirotic, a 6-foot-10 forward bound to Real Madrid in the European league through the 2015 season. The Thunder doesn't need players now, it needs experience, and any additional player worth his salt only cuts into the playing time of the guys who need to grow.

But the guy from Montenegro went 23rd, to Houston, so he was off the table for Presti.

What does drafting Jackson mean? Does it mean Eric Maynor really is on the market, as ESPN's Chad Ford suggested this week? I don't buy it.

Maynor is a solid backup point guard, and while he might get antsy in a couple of years, looking for a bigger contract and more playing time, that's no reason to tinker with your roster now. There's plenty of time to worry about Maynor's potential defection.

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by Berry Tramel
Columnist
Berry Tramel, a lifelong Oklahoman, sports fan and newspaper reader, joined The Oklahoman in 1991 and has served as beat writer, assistant sports editor, sports editor and columnist. Tramel grew up reading four daily newspapers — The...
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