3 free agents Hornets missed out on for LaMelo Ball
The Hornets did well on draft night by scooping up James Bouknight with the 11th pick, but they still need to fill out their rotation to be a little more competitive, especially if they want to continue to provide LaMelo Ball with help. Hornets free agents, well potential guys, can do this.
In the 2020-21 season, the Hornets had a nice blend of young talent and veterans. However, Devonte’ Graham, Cody Zeller, and Malik Monk have all headed to Western Conference teams. The Hornets need to target some of the bigger names that are available because they have already missed out on some key guys.
LaMelo Ball is coming fresh off of a Rookie of the Year award and needs more help to get this team to the postseason. Here are three guys the Hornets should have signed.
The former Lakers big man was coming off of a strange season. He was forced to sit for a month when the Cleveland Cavaliers were trying to find a trade partner for him. He was released, and later signed a contract for the rest of the season with the Lakers.
He clearly underperformed while rocking the purple and gold, but could have a major impact on a young squad like the Hornets. Getting a big man that could clog the paint defensively and roll to the basket offensively would of been perfect for Charlotte.
His stint in LA was rough, but he will flourish in his new role as Joel Embiid’s backup in Philadelphia. Should be no surprise if his name picks up steam around the trade deadline. Maybe the Hornets can grab him then to help LaMelo Ball along.
DeRozan was one of the more high-profile names on the market. However, after finding a home in Chicago, the Hornets missed out on a chance to get a go-to scorer.
Yes, DeRozan operates from the mid-range, but he is one of the most efficient scorers in the league. Let’s also not forget his highlight-reel dunks that just energize any squad he has been on.
The Hornets should have made him one of the top priorities. He would have come in and become a number one scoring option right away, especially while playing next to an elite playmaker like LaMelo ball. Ball would have had a field day finding DeRozan for easy cuts to the basket or playing off the ball with another good playmaker.
This is the one every Hornets fan wanted the most. Pairing up the two talented playmakers from the same family would have been one hell of a show to watch. On a nightly basis we could have witnessed some of the craziest dimes in a season and they would have shared the backcourt effortlessly.
They played together in high school and it is safe to assume they are familiar with how one another plays. Unfortunately, Lonzo and DeRozan will get an opportunity to play together in the Windy City with Zach LaVine. We were so close to getting the Ball brothers to share a backcourt and put up some otherworldly assists numbers. Also, selling tickets would have been the last of Charlotte’s worries with these two in the backcourt.
All three of these names could have came in and produced from day one. More importantly, LaMelo’s job would have been easier. At the end of the day, the Hornets front office should be doing whatever is possible to make sure he is fully invested in staying with this organization long-term.
Charlotte needs to focus on building its roster from both the draft and free agency acquisitions. Think of the Warriors and how they managed to operate in NBA Drafts, snagging guys like Steph Curry, Klay Thompson, and Draymond Green. Later on, they added guys like Andre Iguodala and Kevin Durant to get them over the hump.
Hopefully the Hornets can continue to add pieces around LaMelo for years to come. Whether it’s in Hornets free agency or in the NBA Draft, but preferably both.