In All Seriousness: Hornets of 2010-2011

I’ll give the Hornets credit.

They never say die!

In my opinion, the team is going to miss the playoffs this year but not for lack of effort.

Down 25 Sunday night against Dallas the Hornets roar back and cut the deficit to 4 before the Mavs pulled away for good.

Great effort in Big D!!! 

As of Today (Monday, March 1st) the Hornets trail Portland by 3 games for the 8th and final playoff spot in the Western Conference. 

Barring a run like Golden State went on in 2007 the Hornets will miss the playoffs.

That said…in recent blogs I’ve written about the Hornets of 2010-2011…and looking ahead to next season I’ve written adamently about trading point guard Darren Collison.  It’s my belief that Collison could bring a starter back in return and that would make the Hornets a better team.

But…Collison will not be traded!!!   Here is what will really happen this offseason…and I’m totally fine if things unfold this way:

  • The Hornets will NOT trade Darren Collison or any other key player during the summer.

The Hornets will blame their woes during the 2009-2010 season on the firing of coach Byron Scott, CP3’s injuries and the young players growing pains….and those are all viable excuses.   The Hornets will follow the same path Utah and Phoenix took last season.  Those two teams in essence stood pat and did not make any radical changes.  Both of those teams are now playing much much better than last year with the same nucleus of guys.

  • The Hornets will have to pick very very wisely in the draft and get a player who can be productive immediately.  The team will also have to sign one or two low risk/high reward veteran players.

As for a reliable draft pick.  In the 1st round I’d go with University of Kansas center Cole Aldrich.  If the Hornets luck out and the ping pong balls work some magic for them and they somehow get a top 5 pick I’d go with Wake Forest small forward Al-Farouq Aminu.  Aldrich is a seasoned college player who could step in immediately and help.  Aminu is one of the top wing players in the draft and seems like a true scorer.  In the 2nd round the Hornets should take a long look at University of Maryland combo guard Greivis Vasquez

When looking at low risk/high reward free agents who can replace Ike Diogu and Sean Marks…perhaps take a chance on: 

Adam Morrison, Joe Alexander or Ian Mahinmi.  Morrison and Alexander are former lottery picks who fizzled out without ever getting real chances.  Mahinmi is a skilled big man who’s been an understudy in San Antonio for the past 4 years. 

I also think the Hornets should consider bringing back Rasual Butler.  Butler was traded for one reason…to lower salary.  He’ll be a free agent and he’s still a productive player averaging 12 point per game who can start at shooting guard or even small forward.  If the Hornets can get him for a reasonable price or work a sign-and-trade with the Clippers to send them Julian Wright I’d say the Hornets got better.  

  • As far as trades go…look for the Hornets to be very active buyers starting in December and ending at the NBA trade deadline in February of 2011. 

When the summer of 2011 rolls around the Hornets will have close to $30 million dollars in expiring contracts.  Teams who are faltering next season will gladly work deals with the Hornets to acquire their expiring money.  Look at the Washington Wizards this season….after the Gilbert Areanas situation the team decided to blow-up the roster and good players like Caron Buter and Antwan Jamison were traded for expiring contracts.  The Hornets will have no shortage of offers next season for Peja Stojakovic’s expiring $14 million dollar contract and MoPete’s expiring $6.5 million dollar deal.  So until next December, I would not expect any major trades.  Maybe a minor swap involving Julian Wright this summer but that’s about it.

  • Keep the coaching staff!

Seriously, Jeff Bower and Tim Floyd have done a great job this season and deserve to get a shot with a healthy club for a full season.  I truly believe that the players are smart, respectful guys who understand what Bower and Floyd are trying to do. 



2 Responses

  1. fletch i have to say i cannot agree with you on this one. this team is going the opposite direction. i applaud the comeback by the rookies but they got absolutely no help from guys like mopete, posey, dwest or emeka (he did get 17 boards) but still. They need to do some major surgery if they plan on staying competitive. bower is not fit for a coach, bring in van gundy or avery johnson. they need to trade big contracts such as mopete, peja, and maybe even dwest or okafor. if the hornets go with mostly the same lineup next year they will not last in the long term and paul’s potential to win a nba championship will be wasted.

  2. I’m sorry, but you are just wrong to think we should trade Collison. I know this particular write-up has nothing to do with that, but over the weeks I have grown sick and tired of you actually wanting this to happen. His value is sky-high because Chris Paul is hurt. We need him on this team because Chris Paul will never play an entire season. He will always get banged up and miss 5-10 games a year. We can’t just throw those games. Any value we can get for Collison will not even come close to the value he is to the Hornets when CP3 is hurt. PLUS we have him signed at a rookie(cheap) contract. Anyone that we would aquire for him would just put us right back over the luxury tax.

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