The Charlotte Hornets will select Brandon Miller second overall in the 2023 NBA draft, according to a report by ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski in a SportsCenter interview today. Wojnarowski said that after meeting with outgoing owner Michael Jordan and the Hornets staff yesterday, Miller “solidified his position” as the second pick and “continues to be the focus” for the Hornets.
The Portland Trail Blazers own the third pick in the draft. If the Hornets select Miller, Portland will have the chance to draft Scoot Henderson, widely regarded as a star point guard in waiting. Henderson was projected to be a strong candidate for the first selection in the draft before French center Victor Wembanyama ascended to that position.
Wojnarowski indicates that he Hornets’ fondness for point guard LaMelo Ball factors into their decision. Miller is expected to play small forward in the NBA.
You can view the relevant portions of the interview here:
The Hornets are preparing to select Brandon Miller at No. 2 overall, per @wojespn:— Evan Sidery (@esidery) June 21, 2023
- Miller impressed Michael Jordan and Co. during his second private workout yesterday.
- Charlotte prefers Miller’s fit alongside LaMelo Ball over Scoot Henderson. pic.twitter.com/P3dsnpCl2P
Though “continues to be the focus” leaves wiggle room, Wojnarowski has traditionally used such language to convey near-certain projections without being accused of spoiling the suspense of the draft itself.
Drafting Henderson would leave the Trail Blazers the pleasant problem of sorting out his playing time with their own superstar point guard, Damian Lillard. Lillard has done well over the years playing next to other talented guards in CJ McCollum and Anfernee Simons. He’s also indicated that he’s not amenable to riding out a multi-year growth process and would prefer the Blazers to use assets at their disposal—including the third pick, if needed—to bolster the team with veteran players.