Nelson Chenault-USA TODAY Sports
Before this past postseason, a lot of NBA fans probably didn't know about Reggie Jackson.
It could be because he shares a name with a certain professional baseball Hall of Famer, but it's more likely due to a combination of limited playing time and the man who starts ahead of him, Russell Westbrook.
That changed, however, when Westbrook was hampered by a knee injury, forcing Jackson to step into the spotlight as the starting point guard for the Thunder. Jackson didn't shy away from this opportunity and contributed heavily during each of his nine starts.
For as good as Jackson looked in the playoffs this year, he looked equally as shaky during his rookie campaign last year. Going into the postseason in 2012, Oklahoma City didn't feel too comfortable having Jackson backing up Westbrook alone, which is why Derek Fisher was brought into the equation.
During the first half of his sophomore year, though, Jackson showed great progress in his game and earned sole possession of the second-string spot over a struggling Eric Maynor. This eventually opened the door for his chance to shine in the playoffs, where he proved that he was plenty worthy of being drafted in the first round, and then some.
The later picks of even the first round of any NBA draft can sometimes be a crapshoot, but Sam Presti showed his prowess once more by finding and taking an under-the-radar prospect with tons of potential.
After just two seasons, Jackson has shown that he can make significant contributions to an elite team and that he should be an important part of the Oklahoma City Thunder from here on out.