One of the 2019 NBA Draft prospects that is shooting up teams’ boards is former University of Southern California standout Kevin Porter Jr.
According to a recent report, the Miami Heat seem to have the talented youngster high on their own board and will be bringing the guard in for a pre-draft workout and interview.
“After spending these final couple of weeks in May traversing the country to attend agent-organized workouts of draft prospects, the Heat will begin hosting players for individual workouts and interviews in June,” Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald wrote on Sunday
“And count Southern California guard Kevin Porter Jr. among those who have booked a visit to Heat headquarters, according to a league source.
“We’re told the Heat is intrigued by the scoring ability, athleticism and high ceiling of Porter. But Miami needs a comfort level with a player whose limited body of work includes a brief suspension and only 21 college games.”
Porter is as physically gifted as they come, with a 6-foot-5 frame and 6-foot-10 wingspan. Though, he was suspended for a fairly sizable portion of his only collegiate campaign due to what the USC program deemed “personal conduct issues.”
As there are some question marks regarding the 19-year-old’s maturity, ESPN draft analyst Mike Schmitz stressed that what Porter needs most is a strong organization with prominent veteran leadership.
“Kevin is really talented,” Schmitz said. “I’m based out in L.A., so I got a chance to see him quite a bit. I think he’s one of the more talented scorers in the Draft, if you’re looking at sheer talent. Physically, 6’5”, 6’10” wingspan. He checks all of the boxes there.
“For him, it’s about the interview process, answering why he had such an uneven season at USC, why he got suspended, why he wasn’t able to show much consistency. I think that’s what teams want to figure out about him because some days he looks like a top five pick, and some days he looks like a guy that you don’t want to invest your draft pick in.
“So I think for him it’s about going to a situation where he has veterans and he has support and the team is able to help him just stay on a consistent path in terms of getting better every day.”
The Heat would rank high on anyone’s list of NBA organizations that can take a risk on a talented, but immature prospect. That fact is thanks much in part to their stability at the head coaching position as well as the many high-character veteran players on the team’s roster.
Given his raw talent, it is yet to be seen if Porter will even last until the Heat’s No. 13 overall pick. However, if he does, it seems quite possible that team president Pat Riley will jump on the opportunity to select the possible difference maker.