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3 best fits for Scoot Henderson in 2023 NBA Draft, including Charlotte Hornets

Like Victor Wembanyama, Scoot Henderson has been on the NBA radar for several years. In fact, if it weren’t for Wemby, it’s possible we’d be talking about Henderson as the consensus No. 1 overall pick in the 2023 NBA Draft. He’s that good.

Henderson took a unique path to the NBA, becoming the youngest player in G League history, joining the Ignite at the age of 17. He’d sign a $1 million contract and go on to play two seasons in the G League, but now the NBA is calling.

What makes Henderson one of the top prospects in the NBA draft class? Who’s projected to draft Henderson this summer? We’ll answer both questions while also getting into the 19-year-old Marietta, Georgia native’s weaknesses below.

Related: Top 2023 NBA free agents: Best 100 available with positional breakdowns

Scoot Henderson measurables

  • Height: 6-foot-2
  • Wingspan: 6-foot-9
  • Weight: 196 pounds

Scoot Henderson scouting report

  • Positives: Elite athlete, plenty of hops, finishes at the rim with authority. Quick first step, extremely smooth in transition. High basketball IQ, great court vision, has the distribution ability of a point guard. Effective mid-range game, keeps defenders guessing whether he’ll drive or pull up for a quick jumper. Strong shot form, plenty of length, above-average rebounder, and shot-blocker.
  • Negatives: Poor outside shooter, can improve with experience. Gets into foul trouble. Could be more disciplined on defense, but the potential is there thanks to his long arms.

Related: NBA mock draft 2023: Projecting all 58 picks

Best fits for Scoot Henderson in 2023 NBA Draft

NBA teams don’t worry about picking the player who will be the best in their rookie season. They’re more concerned about finding prospects who can develop into star players. If that’s the goal, there are few players with a higher ceiling than Henderson. But which NBA teams are the best fits for Henderson?

Charlotte Hornets (2nd pick)

Feb 15, 2023; Charlotte, North Carolina, USA; Charlotte Hornets guard LaMelo Ball (1) stands on the court during the second half against the San Antonio Spurs at Spectrum Center. The Charlotte Hornets won 120-110. Mandatory Credit: Nell Redmond-USA TODAY Sports
Credit: Nell Redmond-USA TODAY Sports

At first, the fit may seem odd, pairing Henderson with another inconsistent shooter who may be best suited in a pass-first role. But if both LaMelo Ball and Henderson can become more consistent, all-around scorers, the Hornets’ backcourt could sting a lot of opponents for years to come.

Both players can cause problems with their length defensively, and by being able to balance their chances to run the offense, Charlotte could ensure they have a highly capable facilitator on the floor at all times. Henderson may not make as big of an impact as other prospects the Hornets are also targeting, but he just might be the best player available in the long run.

Related: Sportsnaut’s NBA trade tracker with grades

Portland Trail Blazers (3rd pick)

portland trail blazers
Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports

Portland drafting Henderson could mean a number of things. From a Damian Lillard trade being the next big move, or it’s possible the two work together, while the seven-time All-Star helps show his new teammate the ropes in the NBA. Though, Lillard has made it clear he’s against a rebuild and would rather swap this pick for a proven veteran.

Henderson operating without Lillard would create more pressure to be an efficient outside shooter right away, but pairing them together allows the young prospect to be patient while growing more comfortable from distance over time. Plus, Lillard could use another complementary scorer, and if it happens to be another player who can handle the rock too, that doesn’t hurt Lillard’s chances to stay fresh as he continues to get into the later stages of his career.

Houston Rockets (4th pick)

NBA: Detroit Pistons at Houston Rockets
Thomas Shea-USA TODAY Sports

The Rockets have plenty of shooting guards, but they have yet to find their point guard of the future. Henderson could fill that role from the moment he joins his new teammates in Houston, allowing Kevin Porter Jr. to move to his more natural shooting guard spot, even if it means coming off the bench, or even being traded for another piece that fits the roster.

Henderson’s play-making and open-court vision would immediately make him the best point guard on the roster, and his inability to be a consistent shooter wouldn’t hurt so much when paired with Jalen Green in the backcourt. Henderson could bring more balance to the roster, and more structure to the offense.

Best of all, he could eventually become the best player on the team, which will be a fun competition to watch play out, between Green, Alperen Sengun, Jabari Smith Jr., Henderson, or another prospect.

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