Thunder coach Billy Donovan warned that Bazley, like all young players, will have ups and downs during the season. OKC saw that with Hamidou Diallo in his rookie year last season. Diallo was averaging 5.4 points in 12.7 minutes per game through December, but as opposing teams got to know his tendencies better, Diallo fell out of the rotation. That’s normal. “He’s experiencing a lot of different things,” Donovan said of Bazley. “My biggest thing for him is, as he learns and grows and gets better and has some success, he needs to stay really, really humble.
… And he’s got to stay eager to work and eager to learn. He’s got all the challenges, the difficulties, the adversities that come with being a young player. He’s going to have to have the resiliency to work through those things. If he keeps that kind of attitude, he’s going to really improve.”