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After rolling the dice in the first round. Oklahoma City took no time in making some movement at the top of the second.
One of the biggest items on a slew of Thunder fan’s wishlists came in the form of consolidating draft picks in means to trade up in the draft. After moving Pick No. 16 off for future picks earlier in the evening, Oklahoma City cut their losses tallying together Picks No. 34 and 36 to trade up two selections to Pick No. 32 with the New York Knicks.
In terms of value, Oklahoma City brought out the big guns to climb a mere two selections. For reference, the Thunder traded for last year’s 37th pick (Vit Krejci) and Admiral Schofield in exchange for the 53rd pick (Cassius Winston) and a future second-round pick. In this draft, the Orlando Magic traded out of Pick No. 33 for the Pistons’ 2026 second-round pick and cash compensation.
Oklahoma City may have had something to do with that last deal.
The idea of the Thunder climbed two picks for unprecedented value likely indicated Orlando, or New York, highly valued Jeremiah Robinson-Earl — the kicker, Oklahoma City can afford to splurge of draft capital. This deal was a microcosm of that.
In moving up for Jeremiah Robinson-Earl, the Thunder not only netted their presumptive “guy”, but they also selected one of the more well-rounded prospects available.
Robinson-Earl tallied together a strong sophomore campaign with averages of 15.7 points and 8.5 rebounds with Villanova last season. Robinson-Earl fits the bill of Oklahoma City’s system to a tee. He’s a 6-foot-9 forward who can defend multiple positions on defense, prove his worth getting rebounds, attack the basket, and even create his own jumpers. This evened-out palette is not too shabby given his draft position, but with no dominating qualities, his ceiling is in question. Obviously, however, he has the tracings of receiving immediate minutes under Coach Mark Daigneault.