NBA Mock Draft: The Ringer Continues to Mock Zach Edey to OKC Thunder

Will the Thunder surprise and draft Purdue's Zach Edey in the 2024 NBA Draft?
A dejected Purdue Boilermakers center Zach Edey (15) walks off the court after losing the Men's NCAA national championship game to Connecticut Huskies at State Farm Stadium in Glendale on April 8, 2024.
A dejected Purdue Boilermakers center Zach Edey (15) walks off the court after losing the Men's NCAA national championship game to Connecticut Huskies at State Farm Stadium in Glendale on April 8, 2024. / Joe Rondone/The Republic / USA TODAY
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The Oklahoma City Thunder has a variety of options with the No. 12 pick in the 2024 NBA Draft, but it's hard to imagine they select Purdue's Zach Edey.

Now, Edey has had a decorated college basketball career. He averaged 25.2 points, 12.2 rebounds and 2.2 blocks per game last season. His four-year college basketball career at Purdue was incredible, but he doesn't feel like a good fit for the Thunder.

Edey dominated at the college level because of his 7-foot-4, 285-pound frame. He doesn't possess much of the versatility Oklahoma City thrives with, and he doesn't quite fit the scheme offensively or defensively for the Thunder.

Yet, the apparent need for rebounding in Oklahoma City that pundits keep calling for leaves speculation for the Thunder to select Edey with the No. 12 pick in the 2024 NBA Draft. The Ringer's Kevin O'Connor previously had Edey heading to Oklahoma City, and his updated mock draft didn't change anything.

O'Conner still has Edey mocked to the Thunder. Of course, the size is the main reason to the Thunder selecting Edey.

"Edey addresses Oklahoma City’s need for size and adds a totally different interior ingredient to its offense with his interior scoring, offensive rebounding, and screening," O'Connor wrote. "And if there’s anyone who can turn his touch into reliable 3-point shooting, it’s assistant coach Chip Engelland."

Sure, Edey would address the team's size and rebounding woes, but at what cost? Edey would erase the team's ability to drive the ball at the volume they do, while also making the defense much less switchable. The fit would have to see the Thunder switch up their schemes and go away from their identity that led to 57 wins and a first-round sweep a season ago.

There is a route for the Thunder to add size while maintaining the team's versatility that doesn't see Edey sporting a Thunder jersey. Also, banking on Engelland to convert Edey into a 3-point shooter is wishful thinking.


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Kade Kimble

KADE KIMBLE

Kade is a Strategic Communications student at Southwestern Oklahoma State University. He's been covering the Oklahoma City Thunder since the 2019-20 season.