As the NBA draws closer and closer to the 2023 draft, more and more information has been released that either might give fans and analysts more intel into the minds behind the draft or distract the world with smokescreens designed to throw investigators off of the real scent.
The top of last year’s draft was a perfect example of this as the weeks leading up to the night had everyone believing that Jabari Smith Jr. was a lock for the top pick only to have him fall to third in the actual draft.
There have been similar rumblings of something happening along those lines in the 2023 NBA Draft. For weeks now, the Charlotte Hornets have made it seem as though they are locked into the University of Alabama forward Brandon Miller with their second-overall pick, despite the G-League Ignite’s Scoot Henderson holding that spot on most big boards throughout the entirety of the season.
More recently, it’s been shown that the Hornets could flip back to Scoot, particularly after his impressive workout in Charlotte.
What’s interesting is the fact that the other teams don’t seem as high on Miller as the Charlotte Hornets do. For example, the New Orleans Pelicans are looking to trade up for the opportunity to draft Scoot Henderson, meaning that they’re looking at either the Portland Trail Blazers’ third pick or at a deal with the Charlotte Hornets themselves to jump up to second.
The Blazers have been rumored to be looking to deal away the third pick in order to bring in veteran talent to help Damian Lillard lead Portland in a return to the postseason. It seems, though, that the third pick would hold significantly more value if the Hornets took Miller at two, leaving Henderson available at three.
If Charlotte, New Orleans, or another team trading up to two takes Henderson, it’ll be interesting to see what Portland does then. They worked out Amen Thompson and were reportedly very impressed with his workout.
Could they take Amen and leave Brandon Miller available to the Houston Rockets at four? If they’re still able to take the pick, would the team trading up also take Amen over Miller?
It seems that if any prospect were to take a short dive like Jabari Smith Jr. in this year’s draft, it’d be Brandon Miller, particularly with the off-court concerns he’s still dealing with. It’s not often that a prospect being evaluated at second could potentially fall as far as fourth, or perhaps even further.
What do coaches, scouts and executives think of Brandon Miller and the top forwards in the 2023 NBA Draft?
“He’s a legit number two, number three pick.”
— The Athletic NBA (@TheAthleticNBA) June 20, 2023
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| Title: Brandon Miller could take a Jabari Smith Jr.-like fall in the 2023 NBA Draft
| Author: Andy Quach
| Date: June 21 2023