Juanma Rubio


Chet Holmgren: a

has arrived

The ultimate unicorn has arrived in the NBA: the word is that the league  has never seen a player with Chet Holmgren's star potential.

Holmgren was the No. 2 pick in the Draft and will play for the OKC Thunder. The 20-year-old is a 7-footer with a huge wingspan: 7ft 6in.

Holmgren can do it all: he’s intimidating in defence, and in offence he shoots threes, passes and handles the ball like a point guard. He’s unique.

The problem? A player with spindly arms and legs, he weighs just 195lbs. Many fear he won’t be able to hack the rough and tumble of the NBA.

Some analysts say Holmgren needs to put on at least 30lbs - but it’s also feared that this could hinder his particular style of play.

It’s hard to know how well his game will translate to the NBA: he weighs the same as the league's shortest player… but is over a foot taller.

At 11, he was 6ft 2in. At 13, he shot up seven inches. “It’s a painful process because your bones are growing fast,” he says. “I had to do therapy.”

There's no doubting his quality as a player. He was the star man at high school in Minnesota, and with  Gonzaga in college basketball.

He was a long-time high school teammate of Jalen Suggs, who also played for Gonzaga (a year earlier) and was drafted at No. 5 in 2021.

In his year in college basketball, Holmgren put on just 4lbs. “I actually do lift weights and I actually do eat food,” he quipped.

His parents knew he was special  when they saw the way he took on older kids. Due to his height, he played with boys three years older.

In his first year at high school, Holmgren had just two college scholarship offers. By his final season, he had 30 on the table.

Holmgren was soon a national star:  at Stephen Curry’s summer camp,  he hit the Warriors legend with a crossover that went viral.

When he came up against LeBron James’ son in a game shown on national TV, he delivered a superb display, racking up 12 blocks.

Now he has landed in the NBA. His talent and wingspan make him a potential generational star - but his weight makes him a potential flop.