July 16, 2024

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After the euphoria, what does Ajay Mitchell’s future in the NBA look like?  “I don’t think OKC is the best team for him.”

After the euphoria, what does Ajay Mitchell’s future in the NBA look like? “I don’t think OKC is the best team for him.”

For the second year in a row, a Belgian was selected in the NBA draft. Last year that honor went to Toumani Kamara, and yesterday it went to Ajay Mitchell. The 22-year-old playmaker was selected by the Oklahoma City Thunder, a top team in the NBA. And that may be where the shoe pinches, says Dennis Chait, host of NBA radio broadcast X&O’s. “I think he would have had more opportunities with other teams,” Sporza said.

“We don’t have a new Belgian in the NBA yet,” Dennis Xhaet immediately puts the finishing touches on Ajay Mitchell, who was selected 38th in the draft.

And Xhaët is right, of course: There’s a big difference between being drafted and actually playing in the NBA. “Just look at the second-round picks of the last 20 years: There are more who didn’t end up in the NBA than who did. That’s the harsh reality.”

“If you’re drafted in the first round, your contract is guaranteed. In the second round, that’s not the case,” Xhaët explains. “Oklahoma City now has the rights to Mitchell, but he has not yet made it to the NBA.”

I think Ajayi Mitchell might have gotten more chances with other teams.

Dennis Chait

Is OKC the right place for Mitchell? The team has a good reputation for giving many opportunities to young players and many talents have developed significantly in recent years. However, Xhaët has doubts.

“I’m obviously very happy that the Belgian was drafted for the second year in a row, but I don’t know if OKC is the best team for him. It’s true that they’ve given a lot of young talent a chance, but you also have to give them the ability to get on the field.”

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In short: There could be a lot of young talent on the Thunder. “I think he might have gotten more opportunities with other teams. But never say never. OKC made a deliberate deal with the Knicks to select Mitchell with the 38th pick. They’re not just doing that. That makes me optimistic.”

It’s always possible that Mitchell is still being used as a bargaining chip.

Dennis Chait

A starting center, like Portland’s Toumani Kamara, is something Mitchell can certainly write on his stomach: This spot is for Canadian Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, one of the best point guards in the NBA. And there’s more, as Chet knows.

“Jalen Williams is the second-best player, and he also likes to have the ball in his hands. Then you have guys like Kason Wallace, Isaiah Joe, Alex Caruso who came in recently and in the first round of the draft they went with Nikola Topic as well. They’ve taken a playmaker, even if He was still absent for a long time, these are already 6 names coming up for Mitchell.”

Could there also be another Kamara scenario for Mitchell? Our native was also traded from Phoenix to Portland last summer, where he got plenty of playing time. “OKC could still use some length. It’s always possible he could be used as a bargaining chip in a trade.”

Heading to the G League?

Ajay Mitchell’s future in the NBA is not yet guaranteed, that much is clear. What’s next for our citizen? “The summer league and training camp are coming. They will be very important for him to prove himself. A lot will depend on that,” says Dennis Exheit.

“Then we will know if he will actually become an NBA player. The signs are favourable. If you look at how he develops, I think he will get his chance. Although I’m afraid fans of the Belgian Basketball League we will have to do some practice.” patience.”

Patience seems to be the watchword for Mitchell himself at the moment. Xhäet predicts that the Belgian will first have to prove himself in the G League, the NBA’s satellite competition. “I don’t think he will get the opportunities that Kamara got this season,” he said.

In the G League, you can suddenly get your chance with an NBA team and break through, but you can also completely flop.

Dennis Chait

“The G League also fits Mitchell’s path, but it’s a tough situation,” Xhaët continues. “You can suddenly get your chance with an NBA team and break through, but you can also completely falter there.”

“It’s a very tough world. It’s every man for himself. There’s no team in basketball. It really takes showing what you can do to have a chance in the NBA. That’s tough. But it’s also clear that Mitchell only has one goal in mind.” This is the entry into the NBA.

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“And yes, OKC does give a lot of opportunities to young people, but it’s not a guarantee. On the current team, I don’t think he’ll get any minutes in the NBA. That’s why I’m not convinced that it’s a good destination for him, there were better options,” concludes Xhaët.