Darius Bazley is heading into an important season. With two years in the NBA already behind him, it’s easy to wonder what kind of player Bazely is on track to become.
At the Oklahoma City Thunder’s media day, Bazely shed some light on what he’s striving to become. The 6-foot-9 forward worked for nearly the entire offseason on building strength in order to diversify himself on the defensive end of the floor.
Currently, Bazely can guard the three and four position, but struggles against larger size matchups. Extra muscle should let him match up against the dynamic, strong modern forwards across the league like Jae Crowder and PJ Tucker.
Finding high-level play is one thing, and we’ve seen that from Bazely at times. What we haven’t seen is consistency in any one skillset, and it sounds like his offseason was spent searching for the tools he needs to find that consistency.
The young forward mentioned that defense is something he's looking forward to improving upon this season and is setting his goals high.
Bazely also spoke highly of Thunder head coach Mark Daigneault,
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“He’s an amazing, amazing person. I’m so grateful to be coached by him. On and off the court he’s helped me grow so much and he’s one of the reasons why I feel so comfortable coming into this year.”
Daigneault has shown he’s the right guy to squeeze out the most potential out of each player that has stepped through OKC's revolving door of prospects.
Let’s see if Bazely can step forward amongst the crowd during what will ultimately be a “prove-it” year before he becomes extension-eligible next offseason.
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