With the Oklahoma City Thunder‘s 2014 NBA Summer League play wrapped up, it is clear their young players still need a lot of help. The Thunder finished 1-3 in Summer League play. Although their record did not prove that they are working well together thus far, they did show flashes of a young and talented bunch. Mitch McGary, Jeremy Lamb and Steven Adams played consistently enough to give fans in Oklahoma hope about their team’s future.
Adams and McGary both provide some much-needed bulk down low for the Thunder. McGary averaged 13 points and six rebounds per game, while Adams averaged 9.7 points and 4.7 rebounds per game. Last season, the Thunder struggled to produce points out of their big men. With these two bruisers, the Thunder have a more reliable frontcourt, both offensively and defensively. If Kendrick Perkins does not return to the Thunder lineup, I am sure their offense will thrive behind Adams and McGary’s impressive play.
The Thunder backcourt struggled a little during Summer League play. Jeremy Lamb stood out, averaging 17.3 points per game, but he did so while shooting only 32 percent from the field and 17 percent from beyond the arc.
Lamb’s game needs work, but he definitely showed some promise. If I were Lamb, I would focus on improving my jump shot and working on my confidence. One day, the pieces will fall together for Lamb, but he might not be ready to take on a big load at the shooting guard position when the regular season hits.
I hope the Thunder will figure something out soon, rather than having to depend on a third-year guard at one of the most important positions on their roster.
Perry Jones III and Mario Little were two other players who failed to find their jump shot during Summer League play. Each player averaged around 10 points per game, but had to work excessively hard to score.
Reggie Jackson gives the Thunder a lot of room to lean on when it comes to the guard position, but they will surely need someone else to step up and become a consistent scorer for their team if they’re going to go far in the playoffs.