Taylor Hendricks Draft Profile

by Max Brandt


Hendricks has emerged as one of the biggest breakout stars in college basketball this season, surpassing expectations set during his freshman year. Standing at 6-foot-9, he excels as a sharpshooter from beyond the arc and makes a significant impact on the defensive end.

His perimeter shooting prowess is worth monitoring. Hendricks started the college season with impressive shooting from deep, although he experienced some regression as the season progressed. Nonetheless, he finished the season shooting just under 40% from beyond the arc, displaying high volume for a forward. Now that it's established that his shooting ability is legitimate, he has the opportunity to be seen as a combo forward at the next level, opening up possibilities to contribute in NBA rotations.

There is a slight concern about Hendricks' ability to create his own shot. While he has shown flashes of this skill, he has yet to prove that he can be a top scoring option at the next level without relying on others to create opportunities for him. At times, he can be too passive, going through stretches without scoring. He has expressed his intention to work on his aggressiveness, but it remains to be seen how much progress he makes in that area during the pre-draft process.

Defensively, Hendricks showcases versatility. He can effectively guard both quicker wings and larger centers. While his lateral quickness and footwork still have room for improvement, he exhibits the potential to become a disruptive defender. In fact, one could argue that he has one of the highest defensive upsides among forwards in his class.

In the modern NBA, players who can play multiple positions often find more playing time. Hendricks' ability to play at least three positions could result in significant court time for him as a rookie.

As a four-star recruit, the 6-foot-9 forward received offers from larger schools across various major conferences. However, he ultimately chose UCF due to its proximity to his home in South Florida and the sense of family within the organization. It proved to be an excellent decision as he transformed from a prospect who would likely require multiple seasons in college to a clear one-and-done lottery pick.

Hendricks was one of the top freshmen in the country and possesses the ideal physique of a modern combo forward. He shares the court with his twin brother, Tyler Hendricks, who plays guard for UCF.

Although players from smaller schools are often questioned about the level of competition they face, the Knights had a solid non-conference schedule this season. Hendricks' draft range is quite broad, with his upside potentially placing him as high as the sixth or seventh pick, but there's also a chance he falls just outside the lottery depending on how things unfold.



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