Hornets select Brandon Miller over Scoot Henderson with No. 2 pick in NBA draft | Inquirer Sports

Hornets select Brandon Miller over Scoot Henderson with No. 2 pick in NBA draft

/ 09:23 AM June 23, 2023

Brandon Miller Charlotte Hornets NBA

Brandon Miller, right, poses for a photo with NBA Commissioner Adam Silver after being selected second overall by the Charlotte Hornets during the NBA basketball draft, Thursday, June 22, 2023, in New York. (AP Photo/John Minchillo)

CHARLOTTE, N.C.— The Charlotte Hornets selected Alabama’s Brandon Miller with the No. 2 pick in the NBA draft, giving them an athletic 6-foot-9 wing with a smooth shooting stroke who can knock down shots from the perimeter.

The Hornets chose Miller, the Southeastern Conference’s player of the year as a freshman, over NBA G League Ignite star Scoot Henderson despite some potential character questions.


Miller is tied to a case that led to former Crimson Tide player Darius Miles and another man being indicted on capital murder charges. A police investigator testified in February that Miles texted Miller to bring him his gun that night. Miller hasn’t been charged with wrongdoing, though the ongoing case brought intense scrutiny during the second half of the season for Miller and the Alabama program.


The Hornets targeted just two players leading up to the draft, and general manager Mitch Kupchak said the team would take the best player available instead of selecting for need.

Still, Miller appears to be a much better immediate fit for Charlotte given the current makeup of the roster.

Veteran wing Gordon Hayward, who has struggled with injury issues, is in the final year of his contract with the Hornets and the team hasn’t made a decision on whether to re-sign restricted free agent Miles Bridges, who missed all last season while dealing with a domestic violence case. Bridges will serve a 10-game suspension to start the season after pleading no contest last November and being sentenced to serve three years of probation.

Henderson, on the other hand, would have joined a crowded backcourt that includes LaMelo Ball and Terry Rozier. He wound up going No. 3 overall to the Portland Trail Blazers.

Miller should benefit from playing with Ball, who is an above-average ball distributor.

“Melo is my guy,” Miller said. “I think with Melo, as good of a point guard as he is, I just kind of fill in the place (on the court). And I know he is going to be the big brother for me away from home.”

Scoot Henderson Portland Trail Blazers NBA Draft

Scoot Henderson (R) poses with NBA commissioner Adam Silver (L) after being drafted third overall pick by the Portland Trail Blazers during the first round of the 2023 NBA Draft at Barclays Center on June 22, 2023 in New York City. Sarah Stier/Getty Images/AFP

The 20-year-old Miller is considered a much better shooter than Henderson, addressing an area of concern for Charlotte.

The Hornets finished 29th in the league last season on 3-pointers at 33%. Miller shot 38.4% from beyond the arc at Alabama. Henderson shot just 27.5% from deep last season for the Ignite, although the 3-point line is deeper in the G League.

Miller has top-notch athleticism and should be able to defend multiple positions in the NBA with his size.

Miller joins a Hornets team that hasn’t reached the postseason in an NBA-worst seven straight seasons and finished with the fourth-worst record in the league last season at 27-55. Charlotte managed to move up two spots in the lottery, barely missing out on the No. 1 pick and Victor Wembanyama.

The decision comes less than a week after six-time NBA champion Michael Jordan announced he is selling his majority stake in the franchise to an ownership group led by Gabe Plotkin and Rick Schnall.

Miller made news when he said he considers Paul George his personal GOAT (greatest of all time), not Jordan.

But he said Jordan during his second workout made him feel like Charlotte will be his home.

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“I know we are going to go in and have as much fun as we can in Charlotte,” Miller said.

TAGS: Charlotte Hornets, NBA, Scoot Henderson

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