Dariq Whitehead

6-7, 220 Shooting Guard/Small Forward
Duke Freshman
08/01/04 (19.3 yrs)
Newark, NJ
High School
Montverde Academy
Team Site Profile
Jump Shot
NBA Ready
Ball Handling
90 Overall:

NBA Comparison: Anthony Morrow

Strengths: One of the premier shooters in college basketball as a freshman at 43% on over three attempts per game … Efficient from beyond the arc both in spot-ups and off the dribble … Fluid shooting motion with a textbook high release … Excellent frame at 6’7 with a wingspan just over 6’10 … Filled out body at 217 pounds with a powerful lower half … Solid first step and flexible hip movement allow him to create remarkable space for himself before even putting the ball on the floor …  Complements this movement with a polished step back jumper that he can bury from both inside and outside the 3-point arc … Intelligent cutter from the corner and wing … Uses long strides and terrific body control to attack the basket and slither around contact … Switchable, active defender who has the length and athleticism to guard multiple positions … Not only has the length to disrupt action as a defender, but also possesses the instincts and quickness to read and jump passing lanes as an off-ball defender … Active hands as an on-ball defender who can frustrate ball-handlers trying to move across his body … Decent free throw shooter at just under 80% … Assist numbers were low, but the flashes of accurate passing and court vision are certainly there … One of the youngest players in the draft turning 19 on August 1st …

Weaknesses: Despite coming in as one of the top recruits in the nation, Whitehead struggled to carve out a role for himself … Athleticism never looked right, was a step slow and unable to explode, most likely due to a foot injury that was lingering all season … Was most affected with his inability to get any lift when leaping and it had a clear effect on his ability to dunk and rebound … Grew more comfortable over time, but his inside-the-arc shot creation never flourished with the Blue Devils … A 41% shooting percentage from 2-point range supports that … Negative AST/TO ratio with 27 assists to 39 turnovers … Needs to be more aggressive offensively. Attempted only 28 free throws in 28 games for the Blue Devils as a freshman … Also needs to show more aggression on the glass with just 2.4 rebounds per game … A fractured foot in the pre-season certainly played a large role, and his in-game leaping ability became a major hindrance at Duke … He had a second foot surgery after the season that has made it impossible for him to work out for teams, so his feasibility as a first round pick is likely something organizations will have to discuss with their team doctors in order to figure out …

Outlook: With such a premium put on shooting in today’s NBA, it makes Whitehead an obvious gamble in the late first round that he can rehabilitate his foot injury and regain the explosiveness that made him one of the top 5 prospects nationally in his class for most of his high school career … If Whitehead is unable to regain some of his pre-college explosiveness, it’s unlikely he will be able to have a productive pro career …

Notes: Measured: 6′ 5.75” barefoot, 8′ 7.50” standing reach, 217.2 lbs, and a 6′ 10.25” wingspan at the 2023 NBA Draft Combine … Five-star recruit from Newark, NJ … 2022 Naismith High School Player of the Year and All-American Player of the Year (SI) … McDonald’s All-American Game MVP … Led Montverde Academy to back-to-back HS National Championships … Played on Nike EYBL circuit in 2021 and USA Basketball Junior National Team in 2019 … Missed eight games with injuries at Duke … Averaged just 8.3 PTS with the Blue Devils as a FR …

Derek Bast 6/3/23

Strengths: 6’6 wing … Solid length with a 6’9 wingspan … Good athlete. Good elevation and body control around the rim. Quick first step … Good strength level and build. Plays physical and embraces contact. Can use either hand at the rim … Shooting range extends to the 3PT line and can hit shots off the dribble, screens, or step backs. Good release point and arc on shot … Averaged 16.5 points per game at 51% FG% over the Nike EYBL in 2021. Finished 3rd in scoring in the NIBC with 16.8 points per game in 2021-22 … Gets midrange pull-up off with ease, little space, and good balance. Good understanding and balance of when to look to score vs facilitate … Moves well off the ball … Unselfish and alert, does a solid job of finding the open teammate … Good tools and physicality as a defender. Aware off the ball and jumps passes. Stays in a stance and defends well on the ball. Solid shot blocker and defensive versatility for position … Even keeled demeanor and always under control … Carries himself well and has a professional approach … High floor … Younger for his class, will turn 18 in August of his freshman year of college …

Weaknesses: Can improve shooting and finishing consistency and efficiency in all areas. Tends to release his shot on the way down. Shot 68.4% FT% and 31.5% 3PT% on 4.9 attempts per game over the Nike EYBL in 2021. Shot 41% FG%, 32% 3PT% on 6.8 attempts per game, and 63% FT% in the NIBC in 2021-22. On the negative side of streaky shooting, he’s had games where his contribution was less than desired … Limited creativity and can expand his offensive game in the half-court. Reliant and settles for pull-ups, sometimes contested, and can work on getting to the rim more often … Solid passing ability but not too advanced. Ball-handling can improve as well, especially with his left hand …

Outlook: Duke commit … 2022 McDonald’s All-American MVP with 13 points (5-10 FG, 3-7 3PT), 7 rebounds, and 7 assists … Played in the 2022 Jordan Brand Classic … Recorded 17 points (6-12 FG, 5-7 3PT), 5 rebounds, 4 assists, and 3 steals in the 2022 Nike Hoop Summit … Helped Montverde to win the 2022 Geico Nationals with 14 points and 6 assists in the championship game … 2022 Naismith Prep Player of the Year … 2022 Florida Gatorade Player of the Year …

Evan Tomes 5/26/22