It did not take long for Chet Holmgren to announce his arrival in the NBA, as in his first Summer League game, he did a lot more than lift the Oklahoma City Thunder to a 98-77 win in Salt Lake City, Utah over the Utah Jazz.
Playing in just under 24 minutes, Holmgren scored 23 points on 7-9 shooting, 4-6 from three-point range, and he also finished the game with 7 rebounds, 4 assists, 1 steal and 6 blocks, a new NBA Summer League record.
According to ESPN Stats and Info, Holmgren became the first player to record 5 blocks and make 4 three-pointers in any Summer League game all-time.
“Only six? That's the record? Oh, well I'm coming to break it again,” Holmgren said in his postgame interview.
Drafted second overall out of Gonaga by the Thunder this year, Chet Holmgren was brought to Oklahoma City by general manager Sam Presti with the intent of him being one of the faces of the franchise alongside Shai Gilgeous-Alexander.
Well, he has played in just one Summer League game and Thunder fans are already excited for the 2022-23 season to begin!
Some questioned Chet Holmgren’s abilities coming out of Gonzaga, as he is not a traditional big man in terms of strength and being able to play in the low-post, yet everything about his debut on Wednesday night proved these scouting reports wrong.
He can score from anywhere on the floor offensively, he can block virtually any shot he contests defensively, he can rebound at a high-level and most impressively, Holmgren can be his team’s primary ball-handler and playmaker, something the league truly has not seen in a 7-foot-1 big man.
Chet Holmgren’s unselfishness is what really stands out about him, as he even refused to do his postgame interview unless his teammate Josh Giddey was standing next to him!
“Shout out to my teammates for setting me up, talking to me, just putting me in position to be successful. Shout out to this guy right here,” Holmgren said of Giddey. “Double-double with assists. Great night for him and that helped me out a lot.”
This is just one Summer League game, but Chet Holmgren’s debut in a Thunder uniform could not have gone any better. Holmgren and the Thunder will play two more games in Salt Lake City on Wednesday and Thursday before heading to Las Vegas, Nevada for the official 2022 NBA Summer League.