Chet Holmgren has been impressive in his first few NBA Summer League games. Even Kevin Durant has noticed.
Oklahoma City Thunder fans couldn’t be more excited about Chet Holmgren and they didn’t have to wait long to get a glimpse of just how high his ceiling could be. In his NBA Summer League debut, Holmgren racked up 23 points, 7 rebounds, 4 assists and 6 blocks, shooting 7-of-9 from the field. Those six blocks were an NBA Summer League record.
Kevin Durant is waiting to see how the Nets will handle his request to be traded, but he clearly was watching Holmgren and had nothing but praise for the rookie’s first game (and his sneakers).
What did Kevin Durant say after seeing Chet Holmgren?
Holmgren struggled a bit more in his second game, putting up 11 points and 12 rebounds but shooting just 3-of-11 from the field and 1-of-6 from beyond the arc. However, he still managed a double-double along with 3 assists and 2 blocks, and the Thunder outscored the Grizzlies by 20 points in the minutes he was on the floor.
Holmgren’s struggles with the heavier, 280-pound Kenny Lofton Jr. in that second game, who put up 19 points, 6 rebounds and 3 assists, drew a lot of attention and there are real questions about how he’ll deal with bigger, stronger players. However, it’s worth noting that Holmgren won’t even see many players as strong as Lofton in the NBA.
If watching Chet Holmgren get bodied by Kenny Lofton Jr. last night has you worried about his ability to deal with bigger stronger players, it’s worth noting that Lofton is listed at 280.
Only eight players listed at 280 or heavier logged a minute in the NBA last season.
— Ian Levy (@HickoryHigh) July 7, 2022
What Holmgren has shown already is the potential to be a game-changing rim protector and a fantastic offensive weapon. Watching him, in a Thunder jersey, draining pull-up, step-back 3-pointers couldn’t help but conjure images of Kevin Durant. He’ll have a long way to go before he’s anywhere near that level but he’s certainly off to a strong start and making a good impression with all the right people.