NBA: Profiling the Strengths and Weaknesses of Nassir Little
Nassir Little is a 6’6 small forward. He played high school basketball at Orlando Christian Prep, in Orlando Florida. He was named the MVP at the McDonalds All-American Game and he was the Co-MVP at the Jordan Brand Classic Game in 2018. The 18-year-old is now playing basketball in college for the University of North Carolina with the hope he will be a lottery pick in the 2019 NBA Draft.
Little though, is in an odd situation. He is considered a 5-star prospect and is touted as a potential NBA lottery pick in June 2019. However, Little does not start for the UNC Tar Heels. It makes it difficult for him to standout or dominates college games that could affect his draft status in June. It is not uncommon for UNC head coach Roy Williams to favor his junior and senior players in filling out his starting line up.
In the past, Roy Williams has kept highly ranked prospects like Marvin Williams on his bench. Williams did contribute significantly in the Tar Heels 2005 National Championship without starting. He was then drafted, in 2005, by the Atlanta Hawks 2nd overall. Danny Green, now playing for the Toronto Raptors, did not start for Roy Williams until his junior year. According to Davis Wallace:
“Fans know that Coach Williams loves experimenting with his teams early on in the season. This is part of their love/hate relationship with him. Coach Williams will “wacky” lineups in games right before conference play. Sometimes he’ll use 12 players, other times only seven. It’s still a feeling out period as this team forms their identity”.
Little’s role could change but for now, he is the Tar Heels 6th man. Great players usually find ways to contribute and standout regardless of their role. Ultimately it’s a good sign he does play. We now look at the strengths and weaknesses of small forward Nassir Little.