NBA Draft 2020 Profile: Washington’s Jaden McDaniels could be an exciting wild card for Nuggets

by Alex Labidou
Nuggets.com Staff Writer
@LabidouA

With the NBA Draft just two days out, Nuggets.com takes a look at 10 prospects who have been heavily-linked to the team through various mock drafts.

Outside of the lottery, the 2020 NBA Draft is shaping to plenty of have prospects who could become elite-level role players or projects who can turn into unique players. Jaden McDaniels certainly fits in the latter category.

The Washington forward is lanky at 6-foot-9 with the ability to hit jump shots and use his frame to impact games defensively. The key for McDaniels will be bulking up (he is currently listed at 200 pounds) and finding more consistency. Fortunately for the 20-year-old, he’ll have some knowledge of what life in the NBA is like as his brother Jalen was drafted by the Hornets in last year’s draft. He is also related to former Nugget Michigan coach Juwan Howard and won two titles in an almost two-decade NBA career.  Both could serve as valuable resources for Jaden as he transitions to the league.

Here is more about Jaden:

Age: 20
School:  Washington
Grade: Freshman

Position: PF
Height: 6-foot-9
Weight: 200 pounds

2019-20 Stats: 
PPG: 13.0
RPG: 5.8
APG: 2.1
FG: 40.5
3PT: 33.9

NBA Comparison: Rashard Lewis/Jonathan Isaac

PROFILE: An up-and-down freshman season as a Huskie dampened what were sky-high expectations for McDaniels during the 2019-20 NCAA season. The forward joined Washington as the No. 7-ranked prospect by ESPN and Rivals and the school expected to build off a 27-9 season the year prior. Unfortunately, the Huskies stumbled to a 15-17 record and struggled to execute down the stretch in the second half of games.

McDaniels was one of the bright spots on the team, but he struggled with his shot at times and showed a need for all-around polishing of his game. With the right setting in the NBA, McDaniels has all of the tools to blossom into a Rashard Lewis-type of player. The key will be finding a team that is willing to be patient with the big man.

What they’re saying:

Positives:

“A long-striding athlete with good body control, footwork and the ability to run the floor and cover ground well … Physically fits the bill of the “positionless” NBA standard as he’s around 6’10 with great length (7-foot wingspan) and “skill potential” … Likes to pull up off the dribble from 15-20 ft, and shows glimpses of the ability to make perimeter jump shots from 3 point range too”

-- NBADraft.net 

 

Negatives:

 

“Attacking the rim more aggressively in some spots than others and looking inconsistent with his shooting mechanics off the dribble, McDaniels has no shortage of talent, but is still evolving as a slasher and finding his identity on the offensive end.”

-- Synergy, NBA.com 

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