Every year the SB Nation site managers get together, virtually, to participate in a mock draft.
This time around, our very own Jinal Tailor had his sights on some particular talent that he thought would fit-in perfectly with the current Oklahoma City Thunder.
So, without further ado, here are Tailor’s mock draft picks for 2022:
I know the Thunder have been linked quite heavily with Jaden Ivey recently, but this is an easy pick for me. Holmgren is an excellent two-way player whose rim protection and outside shooting greatly benefit the Thunder.
Oklahoma City was in the top-10 in defensive rating with Jeremiah Robinson-Earl at center. Imagine the improvement with a player like Holmgren, who can anchor a defense effortlessly.
His shooting from outside, 39% for the season, should also improve the Thunder’s spacing. Oklahoma City struggled to space the floor last season when they played Favors, Bazley, and Dort simultaneously.
This will not be an issue with Holmgren. It should also allow Coach Daigneault to put Bazley in the dunker’s spot more often and maximize his hops.
Sochan is the best player left on the board, and he fits the Thunder’s current core well. Oklahoma City does not have a big wing that can defend multiple positions and play different roles on defense.
At the moment, heads coach Daigneault sticks Dort or Bazley on the oposing team’s best player, but neither player is exceptionally comfortable in that role.
Dort gives up a ton of size when guarding enormous wings, and Bazley’s work as an off-ball helper is limited when he is assigned to just one individual.
Taking Sochan would address that issue and allow the Thunder to play different coverages in the pick and roll. Oklahoma City ran a lot of drop coverage last year, which secured the interior but gave up a ton of threes.
Sochan’s size and ability at the point of attack would allow the Thunder to switch more often and be more unpredictable.
I would also like to add that Sochan is somewhat of a late developer. He did not start playing basketball until he was 12 years old and was initially coached by his mother.
I would not be surprised to see Sochan’s growth as a player continue even further.
For me, he’s the ideal pick at 12.
Sochan would address a weakness for the team and has untapped potential.