The Detroit Pistons are once again in the unfortunate position of watching the draft standings instead of the playoff standings.
The Pistons currently have the second-worst record in the league (a half game ahead of Houston), which would give them the maximum 14 percent odds for the number one pick.
Victor Wembanyama is widely thought to be a franchise-altering talent and is very likely to be the number one guy, but G-League guard Scoot Henderson is also making his case.
This could be the first season where most of the best talent comes from outside the NCAA, as Wembanyama plays in France and Henderson plays for the G-League Ignite.
Some scouts have called Henderson one of the greatest point guard prospects of all time due to his elite athleticism, strength, ability to pull up from anywhere and savviness in the pick-and-roll for a guy who is only 18-years-old.
The Detroit Pistons already have a glut of young guards with Cade Cunningham, Jaden Ivey and Killian Hayes, but if they get lucky enough to get the second pick, they won’t hesitate to draft Scoot, regardless of fit.
Henderson may still be ranked below Wembanyama as a prospect, but he’s been on fire of late, showing his prowess and ability to close out games while putting up big stat lines and defenders on posters.
Detroit Pistons: Scoot Henderson is no consolation prize
Scoot Henderson will largely be viewed as a consolation prize for whatever team gets the second pick, but in other years he would be the clear number one pick.
He’s been showcasing his ability of late, racking up 20, 26 and 21 points in his last three games, including at least eight assists in each, a game-winning shot and one of the nastiest dunks of the year:
He’s now averaging 21 points, six assists, 4.3 rebounds and 1.7 steals per game while shooting 48 percent from the floor and 47 percent from 3-point range.
Maybe even more impressive than his highlight-reel dunks is his ability to pull up from the mid-range, make the right reads out of the pick-and-roll and hit step-back 3-point shots with ease.
It’s easy to look at Jaden Ivey and say that the Detroit Pistons don’t need another athletic, ball-dominant guard, but Henderson is a true point guard and his shooting ability in the mid-range is miles ahead of anyone on the Pistons not named Cade Cunningham.
A lot of fans have talked about trying to package this pick in a trade for a star if the Detroit Pistons get number two, but Scoot Henderson is too good to pass up and you can worry about fit and roster later.