Finally, the new Charlotte basketball franchise catches a break in the NBA Draft Lottery. It must have been the name, as the Bobcats were historically unsuccessful in the lottery. So now that it’s all over, the Hornets will have the ninth overall pick in this year’s draft from Detroit.
While conversing with a friend about what we should do with the pick, I came to a conclusion. That conclusion is no matter what the Hornets do, the team is taking a risk. Ultimately, that’s what makes sports so interesting. The best teams are able to stay dominate thanks to a very smart and decisive front office. Below, we will preview some of the best options for the Hornets in terms of the trade market and draft.
If the Hornets were going to keep the rights to the number nine pick, who should they draft? (Keep in mind these are simply based off of who could be available. These players may not be available when the Hornets are on the clock).
-Gary Harris, Guard, Michigan State University: Harris is a guy who would fit in with Coach Clifford’s system perfectly. Not only is he a talented perimeter defender, but his offensive game is strong as well. This pick would make sense for the Hornets, as it would fill the need of a scorer.
-Doug McDermott, Forward, Creighton. This is tricky. I have already seen mixed reviews on twitter regarding McDermott. While I think he will end up being a decent NBA player due to his shooting ability, I don’t know if the Hornets are in a position to take that big of risk right now. The obvious crack on McDermott is his defense, and will be a part of his game thats would have to be heavily evaluated if Charlotte is considering pulling the trigger on the forward.
-Shabazz Napier, Guard, UCONN. This pick would make sense for Charlotte, as the Hornets will be looking to solidify the backup point guard position this summer. Napier is an all around good player and steps up his game when needed. The obvious connection here it to Kemba Walker, the current Hornets’ starter. In the end, it will all come down to rather Napier’s college game can turn into NBA success.
If the Hornets were to trade the rights to the ninth pick this year, who should they look to acquire?
This is interesting to me. All along I have been a huge believer that Arron Afflalo is the guy the Hornets need. With that being said, the Hornets now have something the Orlando Magic could be seriously interested in. Since that is the case, I’m strongly leaning towards a trade of this pick.
Proposed trade: Charlotte sends a 2014 first round draft pick (9), as well as Gerald Henderson to the Orlando Magic. In return, the Hornets will receive Arron Afflalo and Jameer Nelson.
This trade would fill Charlotte’s needs at backup point guard as well as perimeter scorer. The only downside would be Afflalo’s age at 28 with an expiring contract if he opts-out after next season.
This is just one of many trade opportunities the Hornets will have. I strongly believe Afflalo is the missing puzzle piece. If you take a look at the depth chart below, you’ll probably see why:
PG: Kemba Walker, Jameer Nelson
SG: Arron Afflalo, Gary Neal
SF: MKG, Jeff Taylor/CDR
PF: Josh McRoberts, Cody Zeller
C: Al Jefferson, (Free Agent)/Biyombo
Stay tuned for upcoming draft reaction, analysis, and predictions here at The Charlotte Sports Blog!
Lead Hornets Writer: Jonathon Hoppe