Chet Holmgren had a sensational Summer League debut against the Utah Jazz yesterday when he set the Salt Lake City Summer League record for most blocks in a game with 6. Chet boastfully proclaimed that he would break the record again after the game, knowing that the Thunder would take on the Memphis Grizzlies the next day.
Memphis is only playing one of their 2022 draft picks in the Salt Lake City Summer League, that being Kenny Lofton Jr. Meanwhile, the OKC Thunder are playing their top picks like Ousmane Dieng, Chet Holmgren, and established NBA players like Josh Giddey and Aleksej Pokusevski.
Lofton Jr. was matched up against Holmgren and proved to everyone why the concerns around Holmgren's strength in the NBA are as profound as they are. He bullied Chet under the basket and managed to finish post-ups against the center with a 7'6 wingspan.
Holmgren struggled all game, ending the right on 3/11 shooting and 11 points. He did have solid moments with his two blocks and 12 rebounds. However, Lofton Jr. easily won the matchup with his 19 points and a highlight reel of outmuscling Chet throughout the game.
The Thunder picked up a 16-point-win with the superior talent in their lineup. It makes sense for OKC to try and play all their young players together as early as they can. Josh Giddey and Holmgren are getting to work on their chemistry for the season in actual game situations already.
This game will be forgotten as we get closer to the regular season but will be proof for many as to why Holmgren needs to bulk up if he wants to be successful in the NBA. He will have to go up against big men like Joel Embiid, Anthony Davis, and Rudy Gobert through the season and needs to be better prepared for the physical battle against those NBA veterans.