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Thunder Move Up to No. 17, Select Aleksej Pokusevski

The smoke surrounding the Thunder’s interest in Aleksej Pokusevski turned into fire, as OKC traded Ricky Rubio, along with picks no. 25 and 28 to Minnesota for no. 17, which Sam Presti used to draft the Serbian player.

Pokusevski, who turns 19 in just over a month, has been playing professional ball in Greece, averaging 10.8 points, 7.9 rebounds, and shooting 32% from three. He is largely viewed as a project, but possesses an intriguing skill set, as Aleksej can handle the ball, shoot, and pass, all while measuring 7 feet tall.

The knock on Pokusevski is that he’s young, raw, and weighs just over 200 pounds, meaning he’ll need to add weight and strength to rebound and defend other NBA big men. Though he’s likely a few years from having a chance to truly contribute, he gives new coach Mark Daigneault a promising prospect to develop.