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Thunder’s Shai Gilgeous-Alexander knows he has to get ‘stronger’ and become a better shooter


Shai Gilgeous-Alexander of the Oklahoma City Thunder has identified the weak points in his game and vows to work on them as he moves forward.

Per Brett Dawson of The Athletic, Gilgeous-Alexander — who’ll be entering his first season with the Thunder — shared what he believes are his weaknesses. For the 11th overall pick in the 2018 NBA Draft, he needs to work on his strength as well as his shooting.

“And then weak points? Strength. I feel like I need to get stronger, and I feel like I’ve done so. And then just, I guess shooting the ball from deep, off the dribble, as well as catch-and-shoot.”

In his rookie year with the Clippers, Gilgeous-Alexander played 82 games (73 starts). He initially came off the bench but was then inserted by Doc Rivers into the starting five — and stayed there. His veteran teammates were more than impressed at the Kentucky product’s veteran-like savviness.

The 6-foot-6 guard averaged 10.8 points, 3.3 assists, 2.8 rebounds, and 1.2 steals. For all his efforts, he was selected into the NBA All-Rookie Second Team — a big milestone for any rookie in the league.

Now, Gilgeous-Alexander will continue his basketball journey will the rebuilding Thunder squad. Depending on his performance, he could be the team’s centerpiece in the coming years. But he’s taking it step by step. He’s aware that he’ll now play alongside Chris Paul — considered one of the smartest players in the league.

“I just think I’m like a sponge,” Gilgeous-Alexander said. “I just soak things up and learn, and as time goes on, I get better because I learn from my mistakes and things like that. That’s the same thing I’m gonna try to do with this organization and this team.”

From the looks of it, Gilgeous-Alexander has the makings of a great basketball player.