According to James Ham of NBC Sports Bay Area/California, Richaun Holmes is looking for a four-year deal worth around $80 million.
Holmes has been one of the top targets in the eyes of Charlotte Hornets fans for a while, now. With their clear need at the center position, most Hornets faithful have keyed in on a few players this offseason. Other than Holmes, players such as Myles Turner and Nerlens Noel have become popular ideas.
The Hornets are projected to have just over $20 million in cap space this offseason. While they will certainly spend some on bringing back Devonte’ Graham and/or Malik Monk, it is unlikely that they retain both of those players. The money they spend on one of them will be more or less balanced out by the money they save by letting the other walk.
On top of that, Cody Zeller has stated that he wanted to be a part of a winning team. This likely means that he will be moving on from the Hornets this offseason in favor of joining a title contender. With all things considered, the Hornets are in a great place to give Holmes the money that he wants.
Players put out a number of what they want all the time. It creates a starting point and often is much higher than what they end up being paid. However, even if the Hornets wanted to pay Holmes the full $20 million per year he wants, it could be worth it.
He is a 6-10, 235 lb center who would be a big body for the Hornets down low. He averaged 14.2 points, 8.3 rebounds, 1.7 assists, and 1.6 blocks last season while shooting 63.7% from the field. Holmes finished second in the league in field goal percentage amongst those who qualified. He meets all the criteria the Hornets are looking for in a starting center.
At only 27 years old he is just entering the prime of his career. Having a solid big man would also be a huge help to LaMelo Ball’s development. People saw how many alley-oops he was able to throw last year, just imagine what he can do with a legitimate pick n’ roll threat by his side.
Realistically, the number for Holmes will probably be whittled down to something around $18 million. Regardless, though, the Hornets should pay him what he wants. Holmes would be an absolute beast in Buzz City.