It’s Friday, so we’re gonna answer some reader questions to get the ol’ conversation machine started. I asked for Charlotte Hornets related questions on Twitter and elsewhere and compiled them and my answers on here.
How likely is it that Devonte Graham outplays Terry Rozier?
I don’t think it’s very likely. Despite Rozier’s longer NBA tenure, he’s only about 11 months older than Graham. Rozier has experience in big games and has proven he can put up big numbers against the toughest competition. For as savvy and controlled as Graham is, he hasn’t looked the part of an efficient NBA player so far. Graham is the better passer, but Rozier is more likely to have a bigger impact on wins and losses.
What can reasonably be expected out of Rozier as a full time starter?
Big stats that don’t translate to wins. Malik Monk is the only other player on this roster that’s wired to score, and he hasn’t been particularly good at it to this point. I wouldn’t be surprised if Rozier scores in the low 20s per game while racking up five to six assists and rebounds per game. A less efficient version of Zach LaVine’s season with the Chicago Bulls last year is probably a reasonable expectation.
Is Bridges the X factor on this roster? If not, who is?
If we’re talking about long term success for the Hornets, Miles Bridges is probably the biggest x-factor among players currently on the roster. A case could be made for Malik Monk with his offensive talent, but Bridges seems more likely to put it together and has a wider range of potential outcomes. His floor is that of an energy player that defends and makes hustle plays on offense. He’s kinda already there. But he has a chance to develop into a two way star if he improves at attacking the basket. If he gets there, it’ll be a boon to the Hornets rebuild.
Do you think Robert Franks will play 10+ games?
Ten games seems like a stretch. Players on two-way deals are only allowed to spend 45 days with the NBA club. An NBA team will probably play anywhere between 18 and 22 games in that amount of time, so Franks would have to appear in roughly half of the games played while he was with the team. The only way that probably happens is if the Hornets are decimated by injuries, but even then, Franks plays at the position where the Hornets are currently deepest. It’s more likely that he’ll get some garbage time minutes in about four to six games.
Is there anyone on the roster who could be a household name for Hornets fans by the end of the season who is a no name guy right now?
As weird as it may seem, I think first round pick PJ Washington might be that guy. Cody Martin caught a lot of flak for his summer league play, so I think he’s already in the fan base’s crosshairs. Rozier already has the name recognition for being the guy that’s replacing Kemba Walker. That leaves Washington flying under the radar. He was a rather unassuming draft prospect and fans didn’t get to watch him in the summer league, so I think he’s almost been forgotten about at this point. I think he’ll surprise some people as the year goes on though.
Is there any chance of a playoff push or is this team destined for a high lottery pick?
There’s almost no chance the Hornets make the playoffs next season. There’s some young talent on the roster, but not enough to overcome their youth and make playoff push. Playoffs are probably a couple years away at best.
Do you pronounce it Hor”nets” or Hor”nits”?
I say Hor-nits. I feel like pronouncing it Hor-nets makes you over-emphasize the first syllable, which makes the word sound like something totally different.