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One Play: In Summer League debut, Thunder’s Chet Holmgren shows why NBA’s increased spacing could unleash scoring ability

Welcome to “One Play!” The Sporting Information will break down sure possessions from sure video games and peel again the curtains to disclose their greater which means.

At present, Chet Holmgren takes middle stage.


Context: Chet Holmgren had NBA followers buzzing after his debut within the Salt Lake Metropolis Summer time League on Tuesday night time. Holmgren put up a ridiculous stat line of 23 factors (7-of-9 capturing), seven rebounds, six blocks, 4 assists and one steal in solely 24 minutes of play.

Holmgren was insanely environment friendly in scoring his factors. That’s the topic of in the present day’s play, so let’s head to the movie room to see how he did it.

SUMMER LEAGUE: Scores, stats for Salt Lake Metropolis video games

The Play: As you’d think about, the performs that the Thunder are operating throughout Summer time League video games will not be very advanced.

Holmgren obtained most of his buckets via damaged performs, easy pick-and-rolls and good ol’ common isolations. He broke out a reasonably Dirk Nowitzki fadeaway on a kind of isolation probabilities. Watch because the Thunder unfold the ground and let him cook dinner.

Breakdown: The Thunder did not do something particular on this play, however what’s notable is the spacing.

Many NBA groups run some type of 5-out offense. (All 5 gamers stand exterior of the 3-point line.) This opens up the center of the ground to present gifted isolation scorers essentially the most room potential to work their magic.

That 5-out idea could be very totally different from what Gonzaga ran throughout Holmgren’s freshman season. That staff was led by gifted massive man Drew Timme, who was an excellent put up participant.

Gonzaga beloved operating high-low motion between Holmgren and Timme. That reliance on posting Timme up within the paint did have an vital draw back. It clogged up the center of the ground, giving Holmgren much less room to function when he had the ball on the perimeter.

Timme would often be on one of many blocks, attempting to create a seal to get the ball down low. That allowed his defender to simply convey assistance on any drives.

Gonzaga can be well-known for operating a continuity scheme. It is predicated on a continuing move of ball screens, reversals and motion. That is very totally different from what groups just like the Thunder run.

Why it issues: Holmgren did not get to indicate his full bag at Gonzaga. The system that Mark Few ran and the reliance on Timme minimized Holmgren’s position to some extent. That is not meant as a criticism. Timme and Gonzaga had been each wildly profitable in that scheme.

Now that Holmgren is within the NBA, he’s going to be {playing} with significantly better shooters that may take assist away from him. He isn’t going to have Timme down low clogging the center.

And whereas Timme obtained a lot of the bigs guarding him, these guys are going to protect Holmgren now. He can take facilities out to the perimeter the place they are not comfy guarding. He was torching Tacko Fall all through the sport in that method.

Holmgren was a reasonably good school participant in his personal proper, averaging 14.1 factors per sport. He wasn’t anticipated to be a big-time scorer, although. Possibly he does have extra of that potential than the draft consultants thought. The NBA is way more suited to his strengths on offense.

It is simply Summer time League, and it is only one sport. However Thunder followers have loads to be enthusiastic about due to how Holmgren was so simply in a position to get these buckets.

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