The Oklahoma City Thunder fear that their second-overall pick in Gonzaga star Chet Holmgren suffered a foot injury that could pose severe ramifications for his rookie year.
According to The Athletic / Stadium’s Shams Charania, Holmgren “suffered ligament damage in his foot” while playing at former NBA player Jamal Crawford’s pro-am league on Tuesday.
In attendance, and on the court, was Los Angeles Lakers forward LeBron James.
Playing transition defense on James, Holmgren met his significantly bigger opponent under the rim and had his foot stepped on, which caused the versatile big man in Chet to limp off the court.
Charania added that after further exams on Wednesday, Holmgren “has potential torn ligaments in his foot.” A return timeline from the team is pending.
LeBron James: 6-foot-9, 250 lb.
Chet Holmgren: 7-foot-0, 190 lb.
Over the offseason, an anonymous NBA assistant coach voiced that Holmgren’s physical skill set leaves a lot to be desired.
“He’s obviously an excellent shooter, skilled, but he is so physically weak. He can’t get by his defender, and he realized that early and settled for threes the rest of the game,” said the coach, as relayed by OutKick. “He’s so thin in hips and legs that he makes [teammate] Poku [Aleksej Pokuševski] look like he has thick legs. I don’t think he’ll ever fill out. … He has a long way to go.”
Holmgren appeared to be worth his selection in the 2022 Draft after averaging 14 points, 8.4 rebounds, 2.8 blocks, 2.4 assists and 1.6 steals in five summer league games for OKC.
Stay tuned with OutKick as the story develops
Follow Alejandro Avila on Twitter: @AlejandroAveela