This group is the second tier in the NBA hierarchy. The Blazers do not have anyone who profiles as the best player on a championship roster. There are only a handful of true alphas in the league each year, but two current Blazers could be annual All-Stars and top 25 players in the league.
It was difficult to evaluate Sharpe ahead of the 2022 NBA Draft because he did not play for Kentucky. The 6’6 wing showed flashes as a rookie and is breaking out in his second NBA season. There is still room to grow for the 20-year-old, but he is already a starter and key rotation piece.
Do not be surprised to see him vault over 20 points per game in year three and into All-Star consideration. Sharpe is displaying the most upside on the Blazers roster and could be one of the best players in the world in his prime.
The 19-year-old rookie is struggling, but that is not uncommon for first-year point guards. James Harden averaged 9.9 points and 1.8 assists in 22.9 minutes per game in his rookie season. Russell Westbrook, Darius Garland, Chauncey Billups, and more struggled to efficiently score and make plays. It takes time to solve NBA defenses.
Henderson was viewed as a future star coming out of the draft and still has the potential to reach those heights. Will he? It is too early to tell, but Scoot is a relentless worker with tons of upside.
The Portland Trail Blazers are still searching for their number one. They likely won’t find it in the 2024 NBA Draft, but expect them to try. The Blazers will keep building, so stay tuned.