From a storied three-year run at Division II University of Colorado – Colorado Springs, where White earned All-American honors, to a first-team All-Pac 12 selection at the University of Colorado in his lone season in Boulder, to a pre-draft process that’s taken White across the country as the 6-foot-5 point guard tries to impress countless coaching staffs and front office executives, the 22-year-old’s journey to draft day is almost complete.
After working out for the likes of Atlanta, Charlotte, Utah, Indiana, San Antonio, Brooklyn, Milwaukee, New York, Philadelphia, New Orleans and Chicago, White will be back in Denver Monday for a group workout with the Nuggets, who hold three selections in next week’s draft.
It’s been a long journey for White who was a fringe second-round prospect at the conclusion of Colorado’s season but saw his stock continually rise with a breakout performance at the Portsmouth Invitational and then another strong showing at the NBA Draft Combine in Chicago in May.
In DraftExpress’ latest mock draft, White is slated as the 30th overall selection — the last pick of Thursday’s first round.
The Nuggets currently hold the 13th overall pick along with the 49th and 51st selections in Thursday’s second round and White could be a logical target if Denver opts to trade down from their late-lottery slot. Denver already brought in a handful of prospects projected to go in the late-first or early second rounds including T.J. Leaf, Terrance Ferguson, Jonathan Motley and Caleb Swanigan, who could all be targets if the Nuggets opt to move from No. 13 overall.
“I think that if he did really well in workouts, there’s a chance someone in the 20’s could take him,” ESPN draft analyst Fran Fraschilla said in May. “He’s comfortably ensconced in the second round. He really knows how to play the game, and he fits what the NBA is looking for: A shooter who makes good decisions who is a great teammate and who has great character off the court.”
White’s stock has taken off since Fraschilla’s comments as NBA teams are beginning to see that White’s skill-set suits the modern NBA. He’s a high-IQ guard who can play both backcourt positions, shoots the ball well from everywhere on the floor and can get a good look in a pinch. White might struggle on defense, at least in his rookie year due to his slight frame, but he’ll hold his own on the other end of the floor and fill a defined role with an organization from day one.
Denver is three deep at point guard with Jamal Murray, veteran Jameer Nelson and Emmanuel Mudiay all under contract for next season but could opt for a best player available approach with their first round selection, wherever it may end up falling.
Joining White in Denver Monday will be Clemson’s Jaron Blossomgame, Houston’s Damyean Dotson, South Carolina’s PJ Dozier, Syracuse’s Andre White and Central Florida’s Matt Williams.