DRAFT TRADE: Traded to New Orleans Pelicans
About Nickeil Alexander-Walker
Nickeil Alexander-Walker is a talented scoring guard who showed marked improvement in a couple key areas to solidify himself as one of college basketball’s most intriguing combo guards as a sophomore. Emerging as a prospect early in his career with a strong showing at adidas Nations back in 2015, the Toronto native turned in a breakout performance at the 2016 FIBA U18 Americas Championship averaging 17.4 points and 4.2 rebounds per game. Finishing prep career ranked among the consensus top-35 prospects in the high school class of 2017, Alexander-Walker made appearances at the Nike Hoop Summit and Biosteel All-Canadian Game. Making an instant impact playing off the ball as a freshman for Buzz Williams at Virginia Tech, Alexander made a major jump as a sophomore averaging 16.2 points, 4.1 rebounds, and 4 assists per game to earn All-ACC 3rd Team honors as the Hokies advanced to the Sweet Sixteen.
Cousin’s with Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, who was selected with the 11th overall pick in the 2018 NBA Draft after a standout freshman season at Kentucky.
Has excellent size for a combo guard measured at 6’5.5 in shoes at the Draft Combine with a 6’9.5 wingspan and an improved 204-pound frame. Fluid, long-strider who is more crafty than explosive.
Played both on and off the ball for the Hokies this season -- thrust into point guard duty for long stretches late in the year by untimely backcourt injuries. Made spot up jumpers at a strong rate in Virginia Tech’s jump shot-friendly system and showed promising instincts on both ends as a freshman, but showed major growth as a shot creator and displayed toughness as a slasher and defender that he lacked a year ago.
Instinctual defender who makes some plays by virtue of his length and timing. Fit the style Williams wanted to play with his ability to create turnovers getting in the passing lanes. Not the most physically imposing guard, but came a long way in that regard from last year.
Competitive defender whose development physically could afford him significant versatility.
- 2018-19 All-ACC Third Team choice and Wooden Award Late Season Top 20 Watch List selection.
- Ranked 50th nationally in total steals (64).
- Shot 39.2 percent from three-point range as a freshman and 37.4 percent as a sophomore.
- In 2019, helped Virginia Tech to its first Sweet 16 since 1967.
- Ranked eighth in the ACC in scoring (16.2 ppg) and field goal percentage (47.5), fifth in steals (1.88 spg) and 10th in assists (4.0 apg).
- Made Naismith Midseason Team, Oscar Robertson Trophy Midseason Watch List and Lute Olson Award Midseason Watch List.
- ACC Player of the Week (week ending Nov. 18) after a threegame span that earned him MVP of the Charleston Classic and helped VT to its first title in the event since its 2008 inception.
- Athletic combo guard with a solid feel for the game.
- Very aggressive taking the ball to the basket.
- Elevates and finishes through contact.
- Opportunistic defender with good instincts.
- Cousin of LA Clippers guard Shai Gilgeous-Alexander.
- The two grew up together in Ontario and were high school teammates at Hamilton Heights Christian Academy in Tennessee.
- Has three sisters and three brothers.