Syracuse Basketball: Judah Mintz stellar in debut, and experts took notice

Syracuse basketball, Judah Mintz (Mandatory Credit: Mark Konezny-USA TODAY Sports)
Syracuse basketball, Judah Mintz (Mandatory Credit: Mark Konezny-USA TODAY Sports) /

Syracuse basketball has only played one game, but freshman point guard Judah Mintz certainly didn’t disappoint in his debut for the Orange.

The 2022 four-star guard, part of an intriguing six-member class for the ‘Cuse in this cycle, did a lot of positive things in his first contest for the Orange, earning him praise from national pundits while continuing to garner extremely early NBA Draft buzz.

It’s of course no guarantee whatsoever that the 6-foot-3 Mintz will only suit up for Syracuse basketball in just the 2022-23 campaign. He could be a one-and-done player, but he also could stay on the Hill for at least two seasons.

Either way, scouting analysts and NBA Draft experts seem to believe that Judah Mintz has a lot of tools in his arsenal that make him a legitimate pro prospect.

But let’s not rush Judah Mintz out of Central New York anytime soon and see how he fares throughout the rest of the 2022-23 stanza.

Syracuse basketball freshman point guard Judah Mintz was great in his first encounter.

In the 2022-23 season opener for the ‘Cuse, a 90-72 home victory for Syracuse basketball over Patriot League member Lehigh, Mintz proved the Orange’s third-leading scorer, behind senior guard Joe Girard III and senior center Jesse Edwards.

Per ESPN statistics, Judah Mintz in 26 minutes connected on 6-of-9 from the field and 4-of-4 from the charity stripe, finishing with 16 points, three assists, three turnovers and one steal.

Mintz didn’t attempt a 3-pointer versus Lehigh, but recruiting analysts and scouts have said that he is a credible shooter from long range. For me, though, what I believe are Mintz’s strengths include his court vision, his facilitating for others, his ability to carve his way into the lane, and his proficiency at scoring in both the mid-range and near the basket.

Mintz, who started at point guard versus the Mountain Hawks, boasts tons of energy and enthusiasm. He is passionate and will be a leader for the ‘Cuse this season, regardless of the fact that he’s a freshman.

He’s quick, fearless and a tenacious on-ball defender. Given that the current Syracuse basketball roster is way more athletic than a stanza ago, if Mintz and his teammates can create deflections and steals in either their zone or man-to-man defense, I believe that Mintz will be electric in pacing the Orange out in transition.

In a recent article, 247Sports national writer Isaac Trotter said that Mintz is a significant candidate for the ACC’s All-Rookie squad in 2022-23.

Trotter noted in a separate recent piece that Mintz was among the freshmen who caught his attention on opening night during the new season.

Adam Finkelstein, 247Sports’ director of scouting, recently wrote that Judah Mintz could possibly evolve into a first-round NBA Draft prospect.

Other recent stories where Mintz was given some early NBA Draft buzz include a piece from high-school hoops scouting analyst Max Feldman, and also an article from Tyler Glazier and Alex Brown of scouting service Pro Insight.

"They wrote that Mintz is a “shotmaker with incredible craft and angle choices, Mintz carved up some of the best competition available at the high school level, and if he can grow as a perimeter shooter there is a potential NBA future for him.”"

Prior to heading to the Orange, Mintz was a standout for the powerhouse Oak Hill Academy in Mouth of Wilson, Va. Head coach Jim Boeheim, not too long ago, made a flattering comparison of Mintz to a former Syracuse basketball star.

I’m excited to see what Judah Mintz does in his second ‘Cuse non-conference contest, as the Orange will take on Central New York neighbor Colgate this Tuesday night at the JMA Wireless Dome.

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