Five-star junior point guard 'Scoot' Henderson to join NBA's G League Ignite next season

Sterling "Scoot" Henderson, the No. 7 prospect in the ESPN class of 2022 recruiting rankings, has signed with the NBA's G League Ignite program, the league announced Friday.

The move signals a shift in the nature of the G League Ignite thinking. Henderson is the first high school junior to commit to the Ignite program and, due to his age, marks the first player signed who is not NBA draft-eligible the next year.

Henderson has finished all coursework and will graduate high school a year early next week, with graduation a prerequisite for joining the G League Ignite. Because he will not turn 19 until 2023, Henderson will not be eligible for the 2022 NBA draft and is committing to spend two years with the Ignite program.

Auburn, Georgia, Arkansas, Kentucky and Florida State were some of the schools most heavily involved in Henderson's recruiting. Henderson, who goes to Kell High School in Marietta, Georgia, had an impressive junior year that saw him ascend recruiting rankings after leading his team to the class 6A state title game.

At 6-foot-3, Henderson is one of quickest and most explosive athletes in the high school game, while also showing strong potential as a perimeter shooter. His 6-9 wingspan gives him good potential on the defensive end.

Early showings on the grassroots circuit this spring indicated that Henderson had a case to be considered a top-three prospect in the 2022 class, along with Emoni Bates and Jalen Duren.

Henderson is the second prospect officially announced to the G League Ignite, joining big man Michael Foster from Hillcrest Prep in Arizona. Jaden Hardy, the No. 2 prospect in the 2021 high school class, has announced his intentions to join the program but has not officially signed a contract, a source told ESPN.

Eighteen-year-old Chinese forward Fanbo Zeng, who previously committed to play for Gonzaga, also announced that he'll be joining the Ignite via a statement posted on his Weibo account last month. His signing has also not yet been officially consummated.

Jonathan Givony is an NBA draft expert and the founder and co-owner of DraftExpress.com, a private scouting and analytics service used by NBA, NCAA and international teams.