Top 2 NBA Draft prospects will play pair of October exhibition games

Darren Yamashita-USA TODAY Sports
Darren Yamashita-USA TODAY Sports /

Many NBA fans are already thinking about the 2023 NBA Draft. ESPN is going to give them a chance to see two of the top prospects head-to-head.

The 2023 NBA Draft is roughly nine months away but prospect scouting is a year-round exercise at this point. Scoot Henderson and French prospect Victor Wembanyama are already getting buzz as potential top picks and draftniks will get a special chance to see them face off.

Yesterday it was announced that their two teams — G League Ignite (Henderson) and Metropolitans 92 (Wembanyama) — will play a pair of exhibition games in Las Vegas in early October. ESPN, of course, will have the games.

Who are NBA Draft prospects Scoot Henderson and Victor Wembanyama?

Henderson is a powerfully built, 6-foot-2 guard who played last year with the G League Ignite, waiting to turn 19 and become NBA Draft eligible. In 21 games with the Ignite, he averaged 14.3 points, 4.8 rebounds, 4.2 assists and 1.6 steals. His jumper is still a work in progress but he’s a creative ball-handler and passer with explosive athleticism and finishing ability. He’ll have another season with the Ignite to refine some of those skills before he enters the draft but he’s a legitimate challenger for the No. 1 pick.

Wembanyama is an utterly unique blend of size and skill — a 7-foot-4 unicorn who can control the paint with his shot-blocking while handling the ball in the open court, creating for himself off the dribble and draining pull-up 3-pointers. If you were intrigued by Chet Holmgren, Wembanyama is a similar package but with more fluidity and a few extra inches of height and wingspan. He has been on NBA radars for years from his strong showings in U-19 and U-21 international competitions and is the current favorite to be the No. 1 pick.

The differences in size and position mean we probably won’t see much head-to-head competition between Henderson and Wembanyama but simply having them both on the same court, side-by-side, this far in advance of the draft is a rare and special opportunity.

THE WHITEBOARD. Subscribe to our NBA daily email newsletter. light