Hawks: Has Atlanta found a gem in UDFA Nathan Knight?

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It’s only been two games, but with a litany of injuries among Atlanta’s frontcourt — an unlikely name stepped up tonight for 14 points and 3 rebounds while shooting 4/5 from the floor and 2/3 from 3 in 8 minutes.

https://twitter.com/Stadium/status/1342983284121366528

 

We profiled Nathan after the draft, and his numbers out of college present a lot of excitement. I was a little shocked he wasn’t drafted after reading all that he’s done:

 

2020 Stats: 20.7 PPG, 10.5 RPG, 1.8 APG, 52.4% FG, 30.5% 3P

Nathan isn’t a guy we’ve discussed thus far, but he was a very coveted UDFA. His numbers out of William & Mary are pretty hard to ignore. Knight was a force for the Tribe down low, and he won the Lou Henson Mid-Major Player of the year award to go along with his CAA Defensive Player of the Year award. Knight has lots of hardware and eye-popping stats, but like Mays, he’s on a two-way contract. Nathan is an athletic and strong big with some touch on his shot, but he’s still a very raw prospect. If he can put it together, he will make 29 teams regret passing on him on draft night.

 

Of course it’s only one game, but UDFA players like Kendrick Nunn, Fred VanVleet, Ben Wallace, and Udonis Haslem have been key contributors to championship squads. I’m not taking it to that extreme after one game, but Knight has a lot of Hawks fans excited — as he should. With Onyeka Okongwu and Clint Capela both out for probably a few more games, I want to see a lot more of Knight. He didn’t shoot almost at all in college, but the touch on his 3 point shot is a very encouraging sign moving forward. Center was considered a weak spot with Capela’s health being a question mark at the end of last season, and if Okongwu and Knight can come together to form a 1-2 punch off of the bench (for now)… watch out.

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