Malachi Flynn Scouting Report

Malachi Flynn
A second-team All-American last season, Malachi Flynn led the nation in win shares (7.6), and finished sixth in Division I with a plus-minus rating of 11.7. (Photo courtesy of SDSU Athletics)

Point guards have been a very interesting topic in this year’s NBA Draft class. Many of them are high-octane, explosive talents; while many of them are great floor generals who can read defenses to set their teammates in the best positions. 

Malachi Flynn is a point guard who can impact the game on so many levels. He was the driving force for San Diego State (30-2) last season. If the NCAA Tournament were not canceled due to COVID-19, the Aztecs likely would have been a number-one seed in the tournament.  Flynn’s remarkable junior season earned him the Mountain West Player of the Year award along with Mountain West Defensive Player of the Year. He made his impact on the floor known, and his teammates appreciated his effort. 

Position: Point GuardTeam/Class:SDSU (Jr)
Birthday: 05/10/1998Nationality:American
Height: 6’2’’Weight:185 pounds
Wingspan:6’3’’Vertical:
Shot Hand:RightStats:Click here

Flynn is an underrated offensive threat in this year’s draft class. He is excellent at running the pick and roll, and can get into the teeth of the defense to find the big man under the rim. The 22-year-old is so intelligent; he anticipates the right play before everyone else does, and then he executes it. He makes sure to be one step ahead of the defense, and it results in a basket almost every possession. 

This past season, Flynn averaged 17.6 points per game with the shooting splits of.441/.373/.857. He had a true-shooting percentage of 58.3, which was amongst one of the best in the Mountain West Conference. His ability to facilitate also showed in the numbers, as posted an assist-turnover ratio of 2,84 and topped the conference with an assist percentage of 30.7. In terms of combined assists and points per possession, he ranked at the 98th percentile among Division 1 players.  And his overall value was demonstrated by a plus-minus rating of 11.7, which was not only the best in the MWC but also the sixth best in Division I. NBA teams have to be highly impressed with these numbers, as they show the positive effect Flynn has on the floor for his team. 

If Flynn did not play the point guard position, he would more likely be an elite scorer with his ability to shoot the basketball. He is a sniper from beyond the arc, both off the catch and off the dribble. He has great elevation on his jumpers, and is explosive with step-back moves. He also has deep range, and comes up big in key moments, showing a ton of confidence in his shot. 

Flynn is not just a shooter; he is a three-level scorer, featuring a tight handle, good speed and quickness, and excellent body control. He can finish effectively with either hand, and is consistent with floaters.  Overall as a scorer this season, he ranked at the 92nd percentile for points per possession.  

On the other end of the court, Flynn’s lack of size and length is going to be an issue. On and off the ball, he is a feisty defender, and he more than holds his own against most guards. But at the NBA level, there is no possible way that he won’t be hindered by his physical size at times.  

Flynn has the opportunity to become a late first-round pick by some pretty solid playoff teams. The Raptors could use him by grabbing him with their 29th pick. It’s uncertain whether Fred VanVleet will return to the team in free agency. But if not, Flynn could be a phenomenal backup point guard on their roster. 

Another team that could use Flynn could be the Oklahoma City Thunder. The Thunder are a franchise that’s shown that they are looking forward and rebuilding. The team traded away both Chris Paul and Dennis Schroeder, and now own two late first-rounders. This rebuilt roster would give Flynn an opportunity to be the secondary point guard, alongside Shai Gilgeous-Alexander. Flynn could make big contributions on this rebuilding team. 

When speaking on the talented point guards in this year’s NBA Draft, Malachi Flynn’s name should be near the top. He impacts the game on both ends of the floor, and makes his teammates better with his passing. No matter where he lands in the draft, his IQ and skill set will help him to become an important piece for an NBA team. 

— Nick Andre

Dustin Barnes’ Player Profile

Malachi Flynn

Sources, Credits, and Acknowledgements:  Stats used in our scouting reports come from Synergy Sports Technology, RealGM.com, and Sports-Reference.com.  Other outside sources are noted with links to the source.

About the Author(s)

  • Nick is a former basketball player, who loves to write about all aspects of the game, from high school to pro ball. In addition to contributing to Hoops Prospects, he has written for other sites, including AboveTheRimBlog.com and Link.Medium.com. You call follow Nick on Twitter @_nickdormus.

  • Dustin is a teacher and Boys' Basketball Coach at Rabun Gap Nacoochee School in Rabun Gap, Georgia. He has trained and coached players in high school, college, and at the professional level for the past 10 years. He regularly tweets and posts NBA Draft content at @NBADraftBuzz1 on Instagram and Twitter.