How Andrew Nembhard And Kendall Brown Can Help the Pacers
Andrew Nembhard and Kendall Brown are two of the three rookies the Indiana Pacers drafted last week.
The other was Canadian hotshot Bennedict Mathurin, whom they selected sixth overall.
While Mathurin made headlines recently saying he’s better than LeBron James, Nembhard and Brown flew under the radar.
Let’s break down how these two rookies will help the Pacers in the 2022-23 NBA season.
Andrew Nembhard Will Solidify the Pacers’ Guard Corps
Nembhard is another Canadian prospect and one of the more polished point guards from this year’s rookie crop.
He averaged 11.8 points, 5.8 assists, and 3.4 rebounds for the Gonzaga Bulldogs as a senior.
Nembhard is a fundamentally-sound playmaker who will add depth to the Pacers’ point guard rotation.
Indy is currently loaded at the 1 spot with Tyrese Haliburton, T.J. McConnell, and Dwayne Washington Jr. on board.
The moment #Gonzaga’s Andrew Nembhard was selected No. 31 by the Indiana Pacers.
Jay Bilas: “He can be a scorer and a passer and he’s an elite passer. Pick and roll situations, he is surgical. … He’s a very good on-ball defender that defends pick and roll very well.” pic.twitter.com/oYrA0SOJmn
— Theo Lawson (@TheoLawson_SR) June 24, 2022
Nembhard will give Washington stiff competition for the Pacers’ final point guard spot now that Malcolm Brogdon has been traded.
Nembhard is a fearless player who can slash to the basket in halfcourt sets and finish on the break.
He also has a decent outside game and above-average passing skills.
Scouts say he’s a decent defensive player – while he’s not physically imposing, he can make some stops while he’s on the floor.
Along with Mathurin, Nembhard is another two-way player who will make a difference on both ends of the court for the Pacers.
Kendall Brown Is A Small Forward Prospect With A Solid Upside
The Pacers acquired former Baylor Bears forward Brown from the Minnesota Timberwolves via a draft day trade last week.
Brown showed flashes of potential with the Bears as a freshman in the 2021 NCAA season.
He averaged 9.7 points, 4.9 rebounds, and 1.9 assists that year.
Some experts believe he’s one of the most explosive athletes from this year’s rookie class – he can finish with authority on the break.
It’s not hard to imagine Brown being on the receiving end of Haliburton’s and McConnell’s alley-oop passes.
With T.J. Warren‘s status still in limbo, Brown will add depth to the Pacers’ small forward rotation that includes Oshae Brissett and Terry Taylor.
48. Kendall Brown – Baylor – Indiana Pacers (Traded from Minnesota Timberwolves)
9.7 PTS, 4.9 REB, 1.9 AST, 1.0 STL
58.4 FG%, 34.1 3PT%, 68.9 FT%
11 games with 2+ steals pic.twitter.com/HUZZegEUjW
— Aram Cannuscio (@AC__Hoops) June 24, 2022
Brown’s biggest areas of concern are his outside game and defense.
He has an unorthodox release on his set shot.
However, if a defender sags off on him, he can knock down the open trifecta.
Draft experts also feel Brown’s defense is mediocre at best, so he must improve in this regard.
The likeliest scenario is Brown coming off the bench for the Pacers in the 2022-23 NBA season.
He only had one year of college basketball experience so there’s plenty of room for improvement.
All in all, Pacers president of basketball operations Kevin Pritchard and co. did a credible job in the second round of the 2022 NBA Draft.
Here’s hoping both Nembhard and Brown have long, productive careers in Pacers Blue and Gold.