NBA players not getting the recognition they deserve is fairly common in the NBA. Avery Bradley and Danilo Gallinari are prime examples of being good NBA players, but not getting the attention because they may have more talented individuals on their team. But it is simply shocking that Shai Gilgeous-Alexander is not receiving coverage on social media or news outlets.
Shai had a good rookie year with the Clippers averaging 11 points, 3 rebounds, 3 assists and a steal. He was looking to be a major piece in the Clippers moving forward, but all hope of that diminished quickly when Shai was a part of the blockbuster deal that sent Paul George to L.A for Gilgeous-Alexander, Danilo Gallinari and five future first-round picks. Russell Westbrook was traded shortly after Paul George, so Shai was defiantly receiving a large roll on the Thunder. Veteran Chris Paul was also a part of the Westbrook deal and turned out to be somewhat of a mentor for Shai.
Fast forward to March, and Shai was averaging a cool, 19 points per game on a respectable 47% shooting. He also averaged 6 rebounds, 3 assists, a steal, and a block. OKC was also expected to have a major decrease in the number of wins and start a major rebuild in 2020. But with Shai leading the way, the Thunder are currently sitting at fifth in the West. Shai has most defiantly been their best player all season, so why isn’t he getting the spotlight?
We honestly don’t know. If you search Shai Gilgeous-Alexander into Google and go to the news tab, there are no stories made by major networks (ESPN, Fox, NBC etc.) and a majority of stories are written by OKC blogs. This is clear evidence that this man is criminally underrated. It seems like Shai hasn’t got any credit for the help he has provided the Thunder with this season, and nobody is talking about how talented this kid can be. Sure, it’s fun to have jokes about cult figures like Tacko Fall, but should we be giving more attention to a raw talent that has played 6 games of professional basketball, or the guy who’s leading his team to a surprise playoff appearance?
He is having an impressive sophomore season, and the man hasn’t even hit his prime yet. OKC has made multiple stars such as, Kevin Durant, Russell Westbrook, and James Harden. Shai’s role is only going to keep getting bigger under Billy Donovan, it looks almost certain that he is destined to be a star guard in this league. OKC is going to be a team to look out for in the next couple of years.