Minnesota Timberwolves: Josh Okogie sets ambitious goal

MINNEAPOLIS, MN - FEBRUARY 13: Josh Okogie #20 of the Minnesota Timberwolves. (Photo by Hannah Foslien/Getty Images)
MINNEAPOLIS, MN - FEBRUARY 13: Josh Okogie #20 of the Minnesota Timberwolves. (Photo by Hannah Foslien/Getty Images) /

Minnesota Timberwolves second-year guard Josh Okogie is looking to make a big leap in year two and he’s setting his goals high.

The Minnesota Timberwolves didn’t know exactly what they were getting when they selected Josh Okogie with the 20th overall pick out of Georgia Tech, but he did not disappoint in his rookie season.

The six-foot-four-inch guard burst onto the NBA scene as a fearsome backcourt defender with his block on a James Harden stepback becoming the defining highlight of his rookie season.

Heading into his second season, Okogie told Jon Krawczynski of The Athletic (subscription requited) that he expects big things in his career, but he knows there is a lot of work to do to make that happen.

Okogie said his goal is to be the best two-way player in the league, but he knows he needs to improve in certain areas to achieve that goal.

Okogie’s rookie year wasn’t always filled with highlights as he struggled with his shot making only 27.9% of his three-pointers last season, but after a summer of development and gaining some important international experience playing with the Nigerian national team in the FIBA World Cup it’s safe to say that the young guard will make a marked improvement in year two.

Okogie compared his rookie year to his freshman year of college where his head was spinning at times, but he feels like he’s corrected a lot of mistakes that he made in his first NBA season.

Okogie will be fighting for a starting spot with Jake Layman and Jarrett Culver during training camp as both Layman and Culver have earned some positive buzz early on.

However, Okogie does have more experience in Saunders’ system than those two new additions as he got a lot of playing time down the stretch last season.

The improvements in Okogie’s offensive game will determine where he fits in to the rotation this year as he’s already one of the better guard defenders in the league.

Okogie told The Athletic that he didn’t necessarily think he would be a high-level defender right away like he was last season. But he’s aware of his offensive deficiencies and he’s been working to hard to improve in those areas.

Next. 3 goals for Josh Okogie in 2019-20. dark

We’ll be keeping a close eye on practice reports and preseason games as Okogie tries to take steps toward being that dominant two-way player he wants to become.