Bayless: Chet Holmgren more ‘beast’ than ‘bust’

Skip Bayless is not an easy sell — but he’s long bought into Chet Holmgren.

“It was two years ago that I began watching videos of a 7-foot, white center from Minneapolis named Chet Holmgren — I was mesmerized.”

Oklahoma City’s Holmgren is arguably the most polarizing NBA draft pick in league history. Some have compared him to Kevin Durant. Some have compared him to Kristaps Porzingis. And some have compared him to Shawn Bradley. 

Quite the wide spectrum indeed. 

Holmgren has performed well so far in the NBA Summer League. In three games, he’s averaging 12 points onto 46.4% shooting. He’s also making a 3 per game, and is posting 7.7 rebounds, 2.3 steals and 2.0 blocks in 27 minutes a game.

One blemish would be his 3.3 turnovers per contest. 

Still, Bayless is all in.

“The Chet Holmgren that we’ve seen so far in Summer League already has demonstrated to me that he can have a legit impact on NBA basketball games,” Bayless said on “The Skip Bayless Show” this week. “To me, Chet Holmgren is far closer to beast than bust, yet it’s obviously still very difficult for me to put ‘beast’ and ‘Chet’ in the same sentence because the 7-foot kid still weighs all of 195 pounds.”

Bayless: OKC’s Chet Holmgren looks more like a beast than a bust

Bayless: OKC's Chet Holmgren looks more like a beast than a bust

Skip Bayless speaks on Chet Holmgren’s potential and why he won’t be a bust for the Oklahoma City Thunder.

Holmgren’s slender frame is mainly what inspires Bradley comparisons, and at times during Summer League, he’s been physically overwhelmed. 

“He’s been bullied on occasion,” Bayless said. “He will drift for long stretches. Seems completely content setting pick after pick after pick. He’s gonna have to get a little more selfish. He’s gonna have to realize that’s he’s gotta play with more urgency, more intensity, and ultimately, more force of will.”

But for Bayless, his skill set is grand enough to overlook his current shortcomings. 

“Already, you can see the extraordinary skill on full display,” Bayless said. “The step-back 3s. The little left-handed jump-hooks in the lane. Making 15 of his first 15 free throws. Taking the ball off the backboard and long-striding, bringing it up the floor — just takes my breath away. 

“Gut feeling, long term: This is one American, white center will be anything but a bust.”

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