Projected top two NBA draft picks Wembanyama, Henderson reportedly to face off next month
There’s a reason some teams are
tanking targeting next June’s NBA Draft — it is stacked. There are multiple projected franchise cornerstone players at the top of the board.
Frances’ Victor Wembanyama is the big prize and is projected to go No.1. The mobile 7'3" big with guard-like skills is a generational prospect, one of the highest-rated players entering the draft in the past couple of decades (some would say maybe the highest rated since LeBron James). He plays professionally in his native France.
Playmaking lead guard Scoot Henderson of the G-League Ignite is currently projected to go No.2, and he has a combination of explosive athleticism and speed that will make him a menace in transition or the halfcourt. He showed what he could do leading the Ignite last season at age 17 (14.3 points and 4.2 assists a game), and he will enter the NBA with a couple of years of professional experience (improving his shooting and decision-making during that time).
Next month we will see Wembanyama and Henderson go head to head in a couple of exhibition games. Rafael Barlowe of NBA Big Board reported it first a couple of days ago and now Jonathan Givony of ESPN has confirmed it.
During the college hoops season we get a couple of games a year where the top prospects face off, often during conference tournaments or the NCAA tournament itself. However, that has decreased in recent years as more top prospects move away from traditional college ball to places such as the G League Ignite or Overtime Elite (which could have two top-five picks next draft with the highly regarded Thompson twins, Ausar and Amen).
This is a little different, it’s a couple of staged games (being played for the money, let’s not kid ourselves), but it should be a good glimpse into a pair we might not otherwise see (unless you watch a lot of French league games or the G-League). These games will not move the draft needle alone, but you can be sure a lot of GMs and scouts will be in the building in Henderson.