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German center Tibor Pleiss could wind up being a steal |
Cole Aldrich, the well-known center from Kansas that the Oklahoma City Thunder bartered to acquire in the first round of Thursday's NBA Draft, grabbed the next day's headlines and will arrive with expectations of providing immediate relief.

But it's Tibor Pleiss, the little-known center from Germany that the Thunder plucked in the second round, who could one day prove to be the better player.

Cole Aldrich should be right at home in Oklahoma City |
Self said the 6-foot-11, 236-pound Aldrich is a big kid who will feel right at home in one of the NBA's smaller cities. "I don't think Cole could have gone to a better place than Oklahoma City," Self said. "He'll be so much more comfortable with the environment that exists there. That organization has done a fabulous job, not just at winning games but creating a family type environment I think Cole will thrive in.

"I don't want to say this in the wrong way, but I think Cole will operate very well in a smaller market. He could possibly get lost in some bigger places. I think all young kids can. Cole is fired up. His whole family is fired up right now."

Thunder to host camp in Norman " Sports " The Norman Transcript
The Oklahoma City Thunder will host a five-day youth basketball camp in Norman beginning Monday, July 19. The camp is one of several scheduled in central Oklahoma this summer to help instruct children on the fundamentals of basketball and the life lessons that stem from the game.

"The camps are a terrific setting for young Thunder fans to develop basketball skills and have a lot of fun in the process," said Dan Mahoney, Thunder Vice President of Corporate Communications and Community Relations.

10 minutes with UNLV forward Quintrell Thomas - Las Vegas Sun
RG: Exactly. Lets talk a little bit about your stopping point in-between — Kansas. Not necessarily talking about games, but in practices you went up a lot against Cole Aldrich, who was a NBA Draft lottery pick this week. How much did you learn there just from going up against him and some other pretty elite big men?

QT: Well, against him, especially, when we first got there, he literally blocked every single shot. You kind of got adjusted to the college level, because those first three or four weeks were embarrassing. But then, after that, you learn how to do it.

Orlando Summer League Schedule & Roster |
Oklahoma City Thunder Roster: Cole Aldrich, DeVon Hardin, James Harden, Serge Ibaka, Matt Janning* Mini Camp invite, Eric Maynor, Byron Mullens, Ryan Reid, Robert Vaden, Kyle Weaver, DJ White, and Latavious Williams [I've heard that Cole will not be on the roster. At least that is what Mayberry said.]

The Best and Worst Three Picks of 2010 NBA Draft | The Afro-American Newspapers
It was apparent in its first-round series with Los Angeles that Oklahoma City is in desperate need of more size. Andrew Bynum, Pau Gasol and Lamar Odom dominated the Thunder in the paint. Gasol is the most skilled big man in the league, and the Thunder had to use undersized forward Jeff Green to guard him. Aldrich is not going to be an NBA All-Star, but he’s a solid defender and rebounder. He’ll make low-post players earn everything they get, and will be a good complementary piece to stars Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook.