6 – Josh Giddey (Rookie of the Year betting odds = 21.00)
Drafted from Adelaide 36ers (NBL – Australia)
Picked by – Oklahoma City Thunder (NBA Championship betting odds = 251.00)
Measurements: 6’ 8” (2.03m) 205 lbs (93kg)
Perhaps the biggest surprise of the NBA Draft thus far for us. We had this young Australian pegged for 10th spot and headed for the Memphis Grizzles. So what did the Thunder see that we didn’t? Let’s look again and discover what the antipodean has to offer.
AVERAGES AND STATS
Giddey’s numbers are somewhat of a mixed bag. He averaged 10.9 points, 7.3 rebounds, and 7.6 assists per game. His point scoring is nothing to write home about (only just better than half that of number one pick Cunningham), but his rebounds are second only to the exceptional Mobley from the top 5 picks, and his assists are way above them all. Not to be taken lightly.
SKILLS AND ATTRIBUTES
The young Australian is a skilled playmaker and a good offensive all-rounder. He’s one of those intelligent (at times risky) passers who tend to improve the level of those around them.
Clearly an unselfish prospect with such an impressive number of assists. That’s encouraging to see from someone so young. His confidence in game belies his years too.
In fact, this youngster is shaping up to be a true game controlling general, and instinctive chance creator.
Some areas where Giddey can (and will) improve are in his general fitness and burst speed. He will need to step up his game when it comes to shooting and get that scoring average up too. When you’re creating scores for those around you so frequently it becomes less of an issue, however.
Giddey’s speed and crafty, unselfish attitude can help push him to the highest level in the NBA. If he makes creative plays on the open floor and scores around the rim effectively he will become a serious asset.
He manipulates defenders by playing with pace and guile rather than explosive movement. That’s fine, and can be very effective, but he still has significant improvements to make as a jump shooter.
If Josh Giddey can add physicality to his arsenal he has the tools to become a seriously dangerous opponent for any team. His market odds of being Rookie of the Year perhaps reflect his youth and inexperience. He currently stands at 21.00
CAN THE THUNDER BRING MORE THAN JUST NOISE?
Oklahoma finished second from bottom in the Western last season, and dead last in points scored. Obviously, any team that loses 50 games in a season has serious and fundamental issues that need to be addressed. They have done some intelligent dealing to improve their draft picks. Although we were surprised to see them take Josh Giddey as their first pick it may well turn out to be a decent move. He can certainly up their creativity levels and bring some much-needed confidence to a side that is trailing badly in almost every area that counts.
Their NBA market odds are currently standing at odds of 251.00
Update – actual Draft picks here