Trail Blazers’ Scoot Henderson issues bold guarantee: ‘I will win Rookie of the Year’
The Portland Trail Blazers drafted Scoot Henderson in June
Despite the San Antonio Spurs decision to take French phenom Victor Wembanyama No. 1 overall in the 2023 NBA Draft and Brandon Miller earning the second overall spot in draft, Scoot Henderson is confident he will end up having a better rookie season than the two players who were drafted ahead of him.
The Portland Trail Blazers rookie sensation is so confident in how is rookie campaign will play out that made a bold prediction ahead of the upcoming NBA season. During an interview with Playmaker, the 19-year-old Henderson guaranteed he will be named the Rookie of the Year.
“My goal, obviously, is to win Rookie of the Year, and I will win Rookie of the Year,” Henderson said.
Henderson also said that he is striving to one day be recognized as the “best point guard to ever play in the game.”
Instead of playing college basketball, Henderson joined G League Ignite once he finished playing basketball at the high school level.
His time in the G League Ignite seemed to have increased his self-confidence.
“That’s just a mindset, a manifestation that I kind of grew,” Henderson said. “Never doubted myself, you know, making sure I’m always putting good energy in the air, making sure I’m telling myself, ‘I’m gonna have a great rookie season.’ I’m not saying I want to have a great rookie season. I’m gonna have a great rookie season. I’m gonna have a great career. I will have a great career and making sure that’s always in just past tense because it happened.”
Wembanyama will enter the season as the odds-on favorite in the Rookie of the Year race.
Oklahoma City Thunder forward Chet Holmgren will be eligible to win Rookie of the Year honors since his missed all of last season due to a fracture in his foot. Holmgren was the No. 2 overall draft pick last year.
Portland will likely rely on Henderson during the 2023-24 season if the franchise moves on from longtime star player Damian Lillard.
If Henderson does want to make good on his promise, he will have to play a minimum of 65 games in order to be eligible for the award.
According to reports, the NBA is instituting a new rule for the upcoming seasons that requires players to appear in no less than 65 games in order to be eligible to receive awards such as Most Valuable Player, Defensive Player of the Year and Rookie of the Year.
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Henderson averaged 16.5 points, 6.5 assists and 5.4 rebounds in 19 games with the G League Ignite last season.
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