Oklahoma City's controversial first round draft pick, Terrance Ferguson, has yet to be present during this years NBA Summer League. While a previous explanation had been revolving around the community, stating his absence was due to contract complications, the real reason is actually quite a bit more complex.
Since leaving Australia to enter the draft, he has not received clearance from FIBA to formally make his way into the association.
According to a spokesperson for the Thunder, all players coming from overseas organizations dictated by FIBA are automatically required to receive a clearance letter from FIBA in order to pursue basketball elsewhere. Unfortunately for Ferguson and more importantly the Thunder, he has yet to be issued the letter and is forbidden to play until then.
Both Ferguson and the Thunder have received no insight into when he will be granted his permission via letter, but it could take a while. The Summer League only extends into Thursday, and it would be a very bad hit for Oklahoma City not to see any gameplay from him until pre-season.
During the 2016-2017 season under the Adelaide 36ers, Ferguson appeared in 30 of 31 games, averaging 4.6 points and 1.2 rebounds in 15.2 minutes per game.
Billy Donovan and his coaching staff have repetitively expressed how fond they are of Ferguson, claiming his explosive potential on offense and defensive build could be of value to the Thunder’s young lineup.
Watching his highlights from his short stint playing Australian ball may seem to build a solid case for him, it still remains extremely questionable how well Ferguson will fit among the present members of the Thunder roster.
It also remains up in the air whether or not G League time will be warranted to further develop the talented prospect. The coming season may be a breakout year for both Blue big man Dakari Johnson, and forward, Daniel Hamilton. Both members of the development affiliate have showed great progress throughout their time on the Blue, and may be of value to the Thunder’s secondary lineup throughout the coming season.
With any possible outcome, roster space may be limited, creating a scenario where Ferguson is assigned to the Blue, allowing him to ease his way into the current state of the NBA. For now we may just have to wait to see live action of Mr. Ferguson in a Oklahoma City jersey, and whether or not he’s ready to take on the treacherous ways of the modern league as we know it.