Nassir Little NBA Draft Player Profile

Nassir Little celebrating a big play
CHAPEL HILL, NORTH CAROLINA - JANUARY 21: Nassir Little #5 of the North Carolina Tar Heels reacts during their game against the Virginia Tech Hokies at the Dean Smith Center on January 21, 2019 in Chapel Hill, North Carolina. North Carolina won 103-82. (Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images)

Nassir Little had a disappointing freshman season at the University of North Carolina. He has all of the athletic tools to be a fantastic player in the NBA. His ability and upside should make him a lock to go in the lottery, and potentially in the top 10 of the 2019 NBA Draft.

Nassir Little Can be the Next Gerald Wallace

Disappointing Freshman Season at North Carolina

Nassir Little signed with the University of North Carolina as the number three rated high school senior according to the 247 sports composite rankings. Despite his lofty ranking, he came off the bench for the Tar Heels. At times, Little looked lost and seemed to lack confidence. As the season progress, however, he began to find his stride. He quit firing up ill-advised three-point attempts, and began playing to his strength, and attacked the rim. This led to much more efficient play from Little and he played much better towards the end of the season. For the season Little averaged 9.8 points per game, 4.6 rebounds per game, and shot nearly 48 percent from the field.

Nassir Little Has Elite NBA Athleticism

Little is one of the most explosive athletes in the 2019 NBA Draft. He attacks the rim with power and grace and finishes at a very high level. Little really started coming into his own towards the end of the season as he would take smaller wings down on the low block. He showed great ability in the post with a very nice array of post moves. Little is a terror running the fast break. Fellow freshman Coby White was a perfect match for Little because of how fast he pushed the basketball.

Little has the ability to be a spectacular defensive player. He is a super athlete. He has the determination and grit, to go along with excellent size also. Little is listed at 6’6” and 225 pounds with a 7’1” wingspan. That’s elite for an NBA wing. Little is also an excellent rebounder and attacks the offensive glass with a relentless desire.

Nassir Little Needs to Work on his Jumper

While Little nails the athletic side of basketball, the shooting part is still a work in progress. Little really struggled with his jumper at North Carolina, he shot just 27 percent from three. However, a great indicator that he could become a solid shooter is the fact that he shot 77 percent from the free throw line. Perhaps the most disappointing aspect of Little’s game is his consistency. He would show signs that he was going to be a star, but it would only last for a half or just a stretch of play where he would dominate, but he would disappear for the rest of the game. If Little can improve on his shooting and consistency, he could be one of the best players in the 2019 NBA Draft.

Player Comparison

Nassir Little has a game that is very reminiscent to that of Gerald Wallace. However, Little’s game is a little more polished than that of Wallace at the same stage in their respective careers. Little has the same high rev motor and tenacity on the boards and defensive end that Wallace played with. Little has a slightly better offensive game at the same stage in their basketball careers. Wallace improved throughout his career and earned an all-star selection and made an All-NBA defensive team. If Little can mirror those prestigious honors, he will have had a successful career.

Draft Projection

Lottery Selection

Nassir Little should be considered a lock for a lottery selection. He has the potential to be a top 10 pick if a team falls in love with his workout. The Atlanta Hawks would be an intriguing fit for Little. Adding him to Trae Young and John Collins would make for an electric start to the Hawks rebuild. The Hawks would be a very exciting team to watch with Young pushing the basketball with Little and Collins filling the lanes.

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