Mitch McGary taken by Oklahoma City Thunder with No. 21 pick in 2014 NBA Draft

Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

The University of Michigan center travels to Oklahoma City, where his toughness and offensive prowess will bolster their shifting front line.

Viewed as a potential lottery talent in 2013 after his starring role in the feel-good story of Michigan’s run to the 2012 national title game, Mitch McGary enters the NBA Draft as an enigma. That said, the Oklahoma City Thunder selected the Michigan Wolverines big man with the No. 21 pick in the 2014 draft.

McGary sat out the majority of his sophomore season after undergoing back surgery. Before pulling the plug on his season, he averaged 9.5 points and 8.3 boards per game in eight nonconference games. McGary averaged 7.5 and 6.3 rebounds per game during a full freshman campaign, and his increased impact during the Wolverines’ NCAA Tournament run to the title game built his draft stock.

But instead of deciding to leave to become a potential lottery pick after the 2013 postseason, McGary returned. His decision to leave Michigan following his injury-defined sophomore season came after McGary was posed with a one-year suspension following a positive test for marijuana use.

At 6’10 and 266 pounds, McGary projects as a big-bodied energy player and a space-sucker. His ceiling may be limited, but he is in a fortunate position entering a market not over-saturated with physical big men.

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