Better Player vs. Better Fit: The Hornets’ Conundrum

Scoot Henderson is a potential draft target for the Charlotte Hornets.(Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images)
Scoot Henderson is a potential draft target for the Charlotte Hornets.(Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images) /

Earlier this week, The Ringer’s Kevin O’Connor reported that the Charlotte Hornets are currently leaning towards drafting Alabama forward Brandon Miller with the 2nd pick in this year’s NBA Draft.

While the reports haven’t been confirmed by anyone within the organization, a widespread debate has begun across the NBA world about whether or not drafting Miller would be the best decision for the Hornets to make. Some believe the move would hurt the already shaky image of the team; others advocated for the move due to Miller’s versatility and skillset that seems tailored for Charlotte’s squad.

There are also arguments that drafting G-League Ignite guard Scoot Henderson would be the better choice for the Hornets to make. Sure, Henderson may not be the better immediate fit for the roster, but it is clear that he is the better player.

Neither player has attended a pre-draft workout with Charlotte, and the franchise has stayed very quiet regarding who they actually intend to draft.

With draft night slowly but surely approaching, there’s no better time than now to make a case for both of these prospects.

Why the Hornets should draft Brandon Miller: The Better Fit

Miller is an elite scorer who has shown the ability to make threes consistently off of handoffs and has had some success when shooting off the dribble.

At 6’9”, Miller is an outstanding playmaker for a player of his size and can get to the rim and kick it out to an open shooter with ease.

As a great ball handler with very fluid movement and footwork, Miller has a knack for making the right pass as a pick-and-roll ball-handler or finishing at the rim if the defense collapses.

As a lengthy defender with good athleticism and quickness, the Crimson Tide product can guard multiple positions and can navigate through screens effectively.

While Miller is an amazing prospect, one of the main reasons why some mock drafts have him being picked at number two is because of how he would fit on the Hornets’ roster.

Since Charlotte already has LaMelo Ball, one of the best young point guards in the NBA, and Mark Williams – a strong center who just finished his rookie year in the top five in blocks among rookies – a versatile wing like Miller is exactly the type of player that would make an immediate impact in the starting lineup.

Why the Hornets should draft Scoot Henderson: The Better Player

Henderson is a freak athlete who can leap over defenders for a dunk and is not afraid of contact at the rim. He sets a tone for his team, and the energy he brings to the game is reminiscent of one of his favorite players, Russell Westbrook.

As an elite finisher, Henderson has proven he can score at the rim with either hand, though his bread and butter lies within right-hand finishes from anywhere inside the paint.

He is extremely quick, and his explosive first step helps him blow past defenders on dribble drives. His overall shiftiness also allows him to generate space for a midrange or three-point jump shot.

Henderson is an excellent playmaker who can make the right play in pick-and-roll situations as well as isolations. He also makes crafty passes to the open man after driving to the basketball and drawing in the help defense.

As a defender, he puts forth great energy in loose-ball situations and is an avid defender that can get impressive blocks thanks to his athleticism.

Some have expressed hesitations about drafting Henderson due to the fact that Charlotte already runs their system through an elite point guard.

However, Henderson’s ceiling is so high, and Ball’s playmaking is already so refined that passing up on the chance to assemble such a powerful backcourt could be a huge mistake.

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