2021 NBA Draft mock #19: Oklahoma City Thunder (via Miami Heat): Usman Garuba
The Thunder could have three first-round picks in the 2021 NBA Draft. They are in the early stages of a total rebuild, meaning they will likely be shooting for upside over guaranteed impact. Fans saw this when they traded up to take Aleksej Pokusevski in the 2020 draft.
Garuba is another young international prospect with immense upside. The 19-year-old has played two professional seasons for Real Madrid. This year, he averages 4.5 points, 4.5 rebounds, and 0.6 steals in 17.1 minutes per game across 77 contests.
The biggest question mark is his jumper. Garuba has connected on just 29.4 percent of his 109 3-point attempts this season. His poor free throw shooting does him no favors in predicting he will develop an above-average jumper.
Garuba does feature a high basketball IQ. He profiles as a strong defender with the size to switch. The 19-year-old rebounds well and should be able to be at least a tertiary playmaker on the offensive end of the floor. The Thunder take the chance on his immense upside as they continue to amass talent. Do not be surprised to see Oklahoma City cash in some of their future picks to add more prospects in this draft.
Next: No. 20