When you first think of a guy who can fit the Thunder as a team and an organization, you think of a couple of words: Humble, grounded, mature, and young. A lot goes into scouting a player that will fit the Thunder well, besides their talent level. The guy who sets the example for that is Kevin Durant, as he has been a low-key and humble kind of guy that is the face of the franchise. One of Durant’s biggest fans is the Thunder’s recent draft pick, Perry Jones III.
“Everybody knows that I wasn’t supposed to slide as far as I did but, to be honest, I’m happy I did. This is a great organization. I mean, it’s the perfect spot,” said Jones III after he was selected 28th to the Thunder.
Perfect spot is right, but the question is: How will Jones III fit into next year’s rotation? My answer: Perfectly.
There was a big piece missing in the puzzle for the Thunder coming into the 2012-2013 season, and that being an inside scoring presence. Don’t not be mistaken, Ibaka and Perkins play a big role for this Oklahoma City team, but both of their games, don’t not include scoring the basketball, as Perkins averaged 5.1 points per game, and Ibaka averaged 9.1 points per game. If you look at the past champions, they all had a guy who could score the ball, and really stretch the floor out. Two years ago, it was Dirk for the Mavs, and this year it was Chris Bosh. With Jones III only being a rookie this year, he obviously won’t be ready to take on that big of a role, but he could still make a big impact for the Thunder next year. How so, though?
With the loss of Nazr Mohammed, the Thunder are in need of a back-up center. The question now becomes; will it be Cole Aldrich or the rookie Perry Jones III? I think it has to be Perry Jones III. When you talk about a guy who is versatile, Jones III is the guy. He can play the 3 or the 4 and really do anything, whether its hit a three or score on the low-block. Next year, he could build off of Nick Collison’s game and become another big scorer off the bench alongside Harden. The bench next year should look something like: Maynor, Harden, Cook, Jones III, and Collison.
Jones III on being selected to the Thunder, “I think everything happens for a reason and these guys treat me like family, so I’m more excited to be here than anything.”
Well, now the battle starts for Perry Jones III, as he has to beat out Cole Aldrich for a spot in the rotation. As much as I hate to say this, I hope he does.
- For the Love of money: What the Thunders’ Ibaka extension means for Harden (110sportztalk.com)
- Serge Ibaka signs: Why Sam Presti is a genius (110sportztalk.com)
- NBA Roundtable: Experts Talking 2012-2013 Season (110sportztalk.com)