By Shayden Smith and Kyle Dennie
The 2013 NBA draft shaped the Thunder team fans know today. One of the stache bros, arguably the most fabulous of the two, found his way to Oklahoma as the Thunder drafted Steven Adams with the No. 12 overall pick. Adams was originally drafted to come off the bench behind the late, great Kendrick Perkins, but has turned himself into a huge role player for the Thunder team we know today. The Thunder also drafted Archie Goodwin with the No. 29 overall pick. Goodwin was traded for Andre Roberson, who has turned himself into a Defensive Player of the Year candidate. Last but most certainly not least, the Thunder drafted Alex Abrines No. 32 overall. Should I say more? He may not have played till the 2016-17 season, but he has been a valuable shooter off the bench. The 2013 NBA draft proved to be a good one for the Thunder years later, but with no franchise players coming into the city, Oklahoma has seen better. Draft Grade: B+
With the 21st overall pick in the 2014 NBA Draft, the Oklahoma City Thunder chose power forward/center Mitch McGary from Michigan. McGary played two seasons averaging 7.8 points and 6.6 rebounds in 20.6 minutes per game with the Wolverines. McGary was 6-foot-10, 255 pounds at the time of the draft and was considered a “high-energy big man who played in…one of the most competitive conferences in the NCAA,” according to Thunder Basketball Writer Nick Gallo. However, McGary wasn’t able to fully showcase with his new team the same hype he had in Ann Arbor. He primarily came off the bench, playing behind Steven Adams, so he didn’t see the court too much, only playing in 52 total games. He was assigned to the OKC Blue and recalled back up 14 different times his first two years in Oklahoma City. He averaged 4.4 points and 3.5 rebounds in his career with Oklahoma City. McGary battled injuries and was suspended in September 2016 for violating the NBA’s anti-drug policy. On Oct. 24, 2016, the Thunder placed the contract of Mitch McGary on waivers. Two days later, he became a free agent. The Thunder selected Josh Huestis from Stanford with the 29th pick later in the first round. The small forward started every game his senior season and averaged 11.2 points and 8.2 rebounds while shooting 34 percent from behind the arc during that time. Huestis had an interesting situation with the Thunder. The team convinced him to play for the OKC Blue for the upcoming season instead of signing a $1.5 million rookie contract. He “became the first U.S.-based first-round ‘draft-and-stash’ pick in the D-League,” according to Zach Lowe of Grantland. This meant the Thunder didn’t have to pay Huestis at all that season. Placing him straight into the D-League saved them from having to release someone who was already on the Thunder roster. Like McGary, Huestis bounced around within the organization. He was assigned and recalled 31 times to and from the OKC Blue over a three-year span. He saw very little playing time whenever he did suit up for the Thunder, only playing in seven games in the last two seasons. He remains in the D-League where he averages 10 points and 6 rebounds. 2014 Draft Grade C-.