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2020-21 Hornets season preview: Nate Darling

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The Hornets have two players on two-way deals (I think) that may see some time with the NBA club this season.

CAA Men’s Basketball Tournament - Semifinals Photo by Mitchell Layton/Getty Images

This preview originally featured two players, but the Hornets went out and waived Ray Spalding yesterday after I wrote this. Now the Hornets are down to one player on a two way deal. They’ll surely sign another at some point, but this preview can’t wait any longer.

The Charlotte Hornets have one player on a two way deal as of right now. These deals keep players under team control, but the players will spend the majority of the time with the team’s G League affiliate. Two-way players are allowed to spend 45 days with the NBA team. The rest of their time must be spent in the G League.

The Hornets used one of their two-way slots on Ray Spalding for the second half of last season, but he was just waived on Sunday. They used their second slot on Nate Darling shortly after the 2020 NBA Draft, and that’s who we’ll talk about now.

Darling is a shooter through and through. In his senior season at Delaware, he connected on 39.9% of his 8.4 3-point attempts per game and averaged 21.0 points per contest. He can shoot off the dribble, off the catch, and off of screens. He doesn’t need to be set or open to knock down his shots.

The Hornets are clearly looking for a sharpshooting specialist in the mold of Troy Daniels or, more relevantly, Duncan Robinson to have in their back pocket. Darling certainly has the pedigree to be that player, but it remains to be seen if he can do it at the professional level. Beyond the 3-point shooting, Darling doesn’t have much to hang his hat on. He’s a 3-point specialist at the purest of levels.

Since Darling is one of the Hornets’ two-ways, he’ll probably get extended run with the Swarm. I wouldn’t be surprised if he starts and fills it up in the open run-and-gun style that G League games often turn into.