2011 NBA Draft Combine Coverage: Thunder Really Likes Kyle Singler? - May 21
At the 2011 NBA Draft Combine Thursday in Chicago, almost all of the players fielded questions about which teams they met with and worked out for. Most of the answers were pretty standard, but a couple responses stood out.
Like this one from former Duke Blue Devil forward Kyle Singler.
"I had three different meetings yesterday: Detroit, Oklahoma City and Memphis, and Oklahoma City's pretty interested," Singler confidently said to me.
If you check out our latest 2011 NBA Mock Draft, you'll coincidentally see we had Singler going to... yes, the THUNDER!
A team without a glaring need, Oklahoma City could use a true small forward to back up Kevin Durant. Kyle should be able to adequately fulfill that role due to his ability to shoot the ball, experience and work ethic without affecting Oklahoma City's young chemistry.
The 6-9 native of Medford, Ore. has not worked out with any teams yet, but he is scheduled with the San Antonio Spurs. He was also scheduled to meet with six league teams this week at the Combine. Singler sharpened his skills last summer with the USA Select Team, and said that the toughest guy he went against in camp was Kevin Durant (praising his "future teammate?") as the best player in camp.
Singler also played the four in college, and is among the best offensive rebounders in Duke history. His draft stock, and his college basketball career, peaked as a junior when he averaged 17.7 points and 7.0 rebounds while leading Duke to the NCAA Championship, its second-straight ACC Tournament title, and a 35-5 record overall. He earned first team All-ACC accolades as well as NCAA Final Four Most Outstanding Player and ACC MVP honors as a junior.
Singler underwent arthroscopic surgery on his left knee at the Duke University Medical Center last summer, fully recovering to have a very solid, but somewhat unspectactular senior season which caused his stock to drop a bit. So what is the Thunder, or any team that is, to draft him getting?
"A solid player, well-rounded, can do a lot of things, does the small things, and I'm a winner," he said when I asked what his best selling points are.
And conversely, what does Singler need to show to increase his draft stock?
"I probably have to show my athleticism a little more and get a little bigger," he responded.
@Black&Gold Problem is that you see Eli and Cobi as solid backups. Truth is that Eli is number 2 and Cobi is our number 3. They aren't backups, but starters. So what you're saying is that we have no true number 2, but see no need in drafting a receiver? What D line depth are you thinking? DE or NT? Have you seen what LT Walton has done? Remember he's only in his second year.
@Steelr Fan 3:16 Coates was supposed to be plan B at number 2 with the uncertainty of Bryant. You make the case that he's a one trick pony and not a 50 catch per season wide-out, so does that scream out as a option for number 2? What gives you hope about Green? I hope he does end up staying on the field, but so far in his career he hasn't be able to do that. I like James, but if he goes down you trust Grimble? He can't block, and hasn't been reliable in the pass game. He did mess his ribs up with a nice touchdown reception a few weeks ago. That still doesn't mean he can pick up and be an impact if James would not be able to go. We have 7 picks in this draft. The first I hope goes OLB. We are good at CB with Burnes and @[email protected] will be challenged hopefully by Golson. Loser of the battle would be a good slot corner. Golson lacks length so they may throw him in the slot role anyways. LT Walton has been more than solid at DE. If Heyward or Tuitt can't go a few weeks during the season then I have faith in LT to get the job done. I like Chickillo and Moates at OLB. They have started and played solid. Williams and Dirty Red at backup ILB is good depth that any team would love. Safety we have Golden and Dangerfield. Both have started any didn't miss a beat. Offensive line? Yeah, we're good there. You say we're good at tight end and WR, so with or final 6 picks we're going what exactly? A RB would be nice with Williams age. A backup that won't see the field unless God forbid Bell gets hurt is a wasted pick anywhere in the top 4 rounds. Maybe 5th would be suffice. That's 2 picks gone and 5 to go. A backup QB of the future would be nice. Four to go. A special teamed lol? Warren, Boswell, and Berry are really good.