Coming off of a win yesterday afternoon in pre-season, the Thunder is now only 10 days away from the start of the regular season. If you watched the game yesterday, you saw some monster blocks in the clutch for Oklahoma City. Last season, the Thunder finished 10th overall in the NBA in blocks.
Rim protection in the NBA is huge. Defending in the paint and on the perimeter only goes so far. At the end of the day, these professional athletes are gonna make it to the rim. That’s when you need a solid rim protector. Oklahoma City happens to have a few of them on their roster.
When you think of the Thunder’s rim protector the first that comes to mind is Steven Adams. Adams caused trouble for opposing offenses all season a year ago. His big body and physical style of play makes it extremely hard to reach the rim. Adams looks to be in the best shape of his career. Perhaps his ability to move better vertically will further improve his rim protection this season.
Another name that comes to mind is Jerami Grant. Grant could be the best athlete on the Thunder roster. When he was acquired by the Thunder last season, I was most excited about his ability to protect the rim. He didn’t disappoint and had several incredible blocks throughout the season.
A new rim protector might have emerged after yesterday’s pre-season game. Josh Huestis had some incredible blocks within the final moments of the game. Two of them came within the final 5 seconds of the game. The monster blocks ultimately sealed the deal for Oklahoma City. There’s no telling how many minutes he will play in the regular season. However, if he does get playing time, it looks like the Thunder will have another big time shot blocker.
Article written by Craig Hofeld. Follow @TheThunderGuys on Twitter and Instagram.