#24: Reggie Jackson
This year the Oklahoma City Thunder decided to play it straight in the 2011 NBA Draft by selecting Reggie Jackson with their 24th pick.
The 6’3″ point guard, who played for Boston College for three years, averaged 18.2 points, 4.5 assists, 4.3 rebounds, plus 2.1 three-pointers last year. His shooting improved by leaps and bounds (over two years: .430 to .503 in field-goal percentage and a highly impressive .291 to .420 percentage in three-point shooting), which certainly speaks to his ability to learn and grow, hopefully in an NBA setting as well.
The Thunder’s lack of reliable perimeter shooting is no secret. Jackson should also provide a nice spark off the bench and may serve as that pure-type point guard to pair with Russell Westbrook in late-game scenarios.
Jackson is well-noted for his 7′ freakish wingspan. He’s athletic, explosive and unselfish; all traits Oklahoma City greatly values. He looks to be a good fit providing an offensive punch, and his length allows solid defense.
This is a curious scenario given the Thunder’s crowded backcourt; questions will arise with regard to Eric Maynor’s established role as Westbrook’s backup. Perhaps Jackson serves as insurance in case financial concerns spell difficulty in keeping Maynor.
Jackson refused pre-draft workouts, presumably due to recent minor knee surgery; however, he also turned down team interviews, leading many to think he had a draft promise locked up.