2022-23 Thunder player grades: Jared Butler
The 2022-23 Oklahoma City Thunder’s season ended with the play-in tournament loss to the Minnesota Timberwolves, which means it’s time for reflection.
Being one of the biggest overachievers in the league, the Thunder finished 40-42 after being predicted by many to have high lottery odds.
Now that the season is in the books, let’s go back and evaluate all 19 players who suited up for the Thunder this past season. Grades will be handed out to every player in terms of what their expectations were heading into the season and how they lived up to them.
The 19th player in this installment is Jared Butler, who was signed late in the season as a two-way player. He appeared in six games for the Thunder.
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(Editor’s note: We are starting individual grades for all players from the 2022-23 Oklahoma City Thunder. To access other reviews as part of this ongoing series, click here.)
50% 3-point shooting
True-shooting percentage: 57.8%
Usage rate: 20.1%
Win shares: 0.1
Significant Percentile Finishes:
P&R ball-handler: 26.2 percentile
Spot up: 99.6 percentile
Butler was a late addition to the Thunder as he was signed to a two-way deal in March. The second-year guard spent most of the season in the G League after being cut by the Utah Jazz following his rookie campaign.
Butler was drafted 40th overall in the second round of the 2021 NBA draft. A heart condition tanked his draft stock after a solid college career at Baylor that was highlighted by a national championship.
With the Thunder, Butler appeared in six games and only truly played in the final game of the regular season. In his first five appearances, he averaged 6.2 minutes. In his sixth game, he logged in a career-high 46 minutes
Against the Memphis Grizzlies in the final game of the regular season, he had his best outing with 25 points on 10-of-21 shooting and four assists. Although I’m not sure how much of that data is useful when it comes to projecting his future.
It’s hard to give a proper judgment on Butler. He only had two games where he played 10-plus minutes and one of them was essentially a glorified G League game.
The 22-year-old is a bit small for a guard at 6-foot-3 and the lack of playing time probably indicated he didn’t fully earn the trust of the coaching staff. It also probably didn’t help he joined a playoff contender who needed every win they could get for most of his tenure.
With the addition of a third two-way spot, Butler is a prime candidate to return to training camp under his current arrangement. After that though, it’s up in the air if he actually breaks the roster by the start of the 2023-24 regular season.
The career shooting numbers aren’t pretty, the health concerns are very real and his small frame will put him at a disadvantage, but perhaps he’s worth the low-risk gamble and could provide some quality minutes for the OKC Blue.
Until then, I expect Butler to be a prime candidate to be part of the Thunder’s summer league roster.
Final Grade: D