The Charlotte Hornets continue to look for depth and talent in the front court. The second round is a good place to take a flier on a big or athletic forward, like the Hornets did with Nick Richards and Vernon Carey a couple of years ago. Those didn’t pan out, but it doesn’t mean we can’t try again. One prospect with an intriguing profile is Josh Minott out of Memphis. He’ll be in Charlotte in the next week or two for a workout, so there’s definitely some interest.
Height: 6’8.75” in shoes
Standing reach: 8’11.5”
Weight: 197 pounds
Defensive potential, athleticism, glimpses of passing ability
Minott’s appeal is in his defense. He has decent feet and length that gives him a lot of room for error. He plays with a super high motor and takes pride in getting stops defensively. He can stick with smaller players on the perimeter and has some impressive highlights as a help side defender. He hustles back in transition and is a frequent chase down blocker.
Josh Minott is one of my favorite players of this year's draft cycle.— Ersin Demir (@EDemirNBA) May 25, 2022
The 6-foot-8 versatile forward is a guarantee for defensive activity. A combined 8.5 block and steal rate makes him a stock guarantee in every 12 possessions.
Have him as a late 1st round pick since December! pic.twitter.com/2cHY8dr3tR
He gets in the passing lanes and can run the floor to finish on the break.
He finished his freshman season averaging 2.2 steals and 1.8 blocks per 40 minutes, and extremely impressive combination of numbers. If nothing else, Minott has the potential to be a positive player on the defensive end of the floor.
His motor and athleticism translate to the offensive end as well. He’s active on the offensive glass and is a lob threat on the roll and out of the dunker spot. He finishes efficiently in transition and shows the occasional ability to drive through open spaces from the perimeter.
Minott has some intriguing potential as a passer. He’s not a traditional facilitator and he’s not going to orchestrate an offense, but he racked up a decent amount of assists in his lone collegiate season. He quickly looks for outlets after securing defensive rebounds. He showed some nice vision in the combine scrimmages.
Josh Minott attacks off the catch and delivers a nice wraparound pass pic.twitter.com/iMayQo056x— Aram Cannuscio (@AC__Hoops) May 20, 2022
He averaged 2.6 per 40 minutes at Memphis, which is a higher-than-expected number for a player largely expected to finish plays.
Shooting ability, positional fit
These two sore spots in Minott’s game kind of play into one another. He attempted just 14 3-pointers in his one season at Memphis, and he only connected on two of them. His shot looks different on every attempt and doesn’t look confident of fluid by any means. His motion isn’t linear—he kind of brings the ball in a sweeping motion across as his body as he loads up. He also has this unusual pre-shot hitch. Like he takes a moment to gather himself before getting into the shooting motion but then hurries the shot from load to release. The shot looked better at his pro day, but that’s a controlled environment that’s essentially scripted. His free throw shooting was also decent, but the live game shooting needs a lot of work.
Josh Minott showed quite a bit of talent in the Versus Pro Day with the quickness he gets off his feet, fluidity, body control and soft touch on his jumper. Definitely has intriguing long-term upside. pic.twitter.com/mVOTi3z2F7— Jonathan Givony (@DraftExpress) May 17, 2022
If the shot doesn’t come around, it’s hard to peg Minott into a position. He’s got decent enough length to be a big, but he’s very light and doesn’t have the best play strength. A team playing him at the five would probably be playing undersized, which isn’t the worst thing in today’s NBA but can pose problems at times. His measurements are probably more ideal for a forward, but it’s going to be very hard for him to stay on the floor as a forward if he’s a complete non-threat as a shooter.
Josh Minott has an intriguing combination of defensive potential and passing ability for his likely position, however, he doesn’t possess the best physical profile for the position he would be most effective in. He’s a popular sleeper pick on draft Twitter, and it certainly wouldn’t hurt the Hornets to use their third of three picks on a big swing.