Thunder: Why Rookie of the Year is Chet Holmgren's to lose

Oklahoma City Thunder v Dallas Mavericks
Oklahoma City Thunder v Dallas Mavericks / Richard Rodriguez/GettyImages
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Coming into the 2023–24 NBA season, much hype and attention was given to San Antonio Spurs #1 overall pick, prized rookie Victor Wembanyama, the most heralded since LeBron James's arrival to the NBA in 2003.2023–24 One ultra-talented rookie who's a unique player in his own right who's been considered a unicorn since he was in high school is Oklahoma City Thunder's 7-foot-1 Chet Holmgren.

Holmgren, 21, who was the #2 overall pick in 2022, missed all of his initial rookie season in 2022–23 due to a lisfranc tear he suffered in his foot. Despite sitting out all of last season, Holmgren was able to take advantage of working out with NBA weight and strength trainers to strengthen his thin frame.

He has also tightened up his weaknesses and experienced what traveling in the NBA is like, as well as what off-court life is like and how guys carry themselves up close. Similar to Black Griffin (#1 overall pick in 2009), Holmgren missing all of his initial rookie season seems to have been a blessing in disguise.