There is only one more week of anxiously waiting for Thunder basketball to resume. With the NBA scrimmages taking place now, the wait only seems to intensify.
Today we are going to look at Darius Bazley who wears number 7 for Oklahoma City.
Bazley has had quite the unique journey to the NBA. He decided after high school to skip college and head straight into the NBA’s G League program. At the time, a lot of people thought this would be the end of the “one and done era”. If Bazley saw success heading straight into the G League, more highly touted recruits would likely do the same.
However, instead of joining the G League, he signed a three-month internship with New Balance. This allowed Bazley to prepare on his own for the NBA draft, and rack up $1 million while he was at it. (I wish someone would offer me a $1 million internship.)
At the end of his internship, Bazley entered the 2019 NBA draft. He was selected 23rd overall by the Utah Jazz. He was then immediately traded to the Memphis Grizzlies, who then traded him to the Oklahoma City Thunder.
As a 19 year old rookie, Bazley has played in 53 games, and started in 8 of them. He is averaging 4.5 points, and 3.7 rebounds per game. Coming into his rookie season, there were a lot of question marks about his potential. However, after receiving quality minutes early on, Thunder fans quickly grew in excitement about Bazley’s future with the Thunder.
Unfortunately, Bazley suffered a knee injury and missed the Thunder’s last 11 games. He is fully recovered now thanks to the season being postponed. That being said, his role on the team is now questionable. A lot of people tend to think he is out of rotation at this point. But, Billy Donovan did say he could see some time at the 5 position if the Thunder decide to play small ball.
Although his role may be limited during the NBA Bubble, there is still plenty to be excited about this kid. He has tremendous potential, and loves being in OKC.
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