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June 27, 2014

What the Charlotte Hornets did in the 2014 NBA draft

At the end of a long night that included three trades, Charlotte Hornets general manager Rich Cho emerged from the NBA draft with the following:

            -- Indiana power forward Noah Vonleh.

-- Former North Carolina shooting guard P.J. Hairston.

-- Additional space under the salary cap once center Brendan Haywood ends up with the Cleveland Cavaliers in July.

-- Cash considerations in the trades with the Miami Heat and Oklahoma City Thunder.

            Sounds like a good day’s work.

The night started with Vonleh, a 6-foot-10 freshman, slipping to the Hornets’ No. 9 pick. Most mock drafts had Vonleh going anywhere from the fourth pick to the seventh. He has a 7-foot-5 wingspan and ballhandling and shooting skills uncommon for his height.

            The Hornets, who had not worked out Vonleh, grabbed him. This was the second year in a row this franchise used a lottery pick on the Hoosiers’ top big man. A year ago they used the No. 4 overall pick on Cody Zeller.

            Now Vonleh could end up Zeller’s backup and/or competition.

“We had Noah rated a lot higher. We were ecstatic when he was there,” Cho said at a past-midnight media briefing. “He’s a very skilled big man who can play inside or play outside.”

Vonleh serves two purposes: He adds size (one of the things coach Steve Clifford has lobbied for) and he’s insurance should starter Josh McRoberts sign elsewhere. McRoberts opted out of his contract, becoming an unrestricted free agent in July.

Then the Hornets turned their attention to the No. 24 pick, which they had acquired from the Portland Trail Blazers (ironically, when Cho was Blazers GM). This became the first of three trades.

The Hornets acquired Connecticut point guard Shabazz Napier to ship him to the Miami Heat. In return the Hornets received the 26th pick, the 55th pick, Miami’s 2019 second-round pick and cash.

The Hornets wanted Hairston to address the team’s relatively poor outside shooting. Cho said he was confident, based on the team’s intel, that he’d be available at 26, just as he was at 24.

“He really fills a need for us,” Cho said of Hairston, who played in the NBA’s Development League (Texas Legends) after the NCAA permanently stripped him of eligibility.

Hairston, who grew up in Greensboro, has issues in his recent past that would raise questions about his judgment. He was accused of receiving free use of a rental car, violating NCAA rules, while at North Carolina. And he was arrested in a traffic stop that involved marijuana and a hand gun. The charge was later dropped.

Cho said the team investigated the issues in Hairston’s past, and felt confident about using a first-round pick to acquire him.

Hairston figures to offer starter Gerald Henderson competition. He has more shooting range than Henderson has demonstrated.

That left the Hornets with two second-round picks: Nos. 45 and 55. By the end of the draft, they’d have neither.

The Hornets selected Stanford power forward Dwight Powell 45th to move him to the Cavaliers. They selected Semaj Christon 55th to move him to the Oklahoma City Thunder.

The Hornets can’t talk about the deal with the Cavs because it can’t be consummated until the new salary-cap year begins July 1. But NBA sources say Powell and veteran center Brendan Haywood will head to Cleveland and the Hornets get the unguaranteed contract of Alonzo Gee.

The net effect? The Hornets get the $2 million they owe Haywood (from the secondary waiver-claim after the Dallas Mavericks cut Haywood under the amnesty rule) off their books. That adds to the at least $13 million in cap space the Hornets had entering free-agency.

Haywood missed all last season with a stress fracture in his left foot and had a cloudy future with the Hornets.

The last maneuver of the night was effectively selling the 55th pick, acquired from Miami, to the Thunder, who wanted Christon.

The net effect? The Hornets will send Vonleh, Zeller and Hairston to summer league in Las Vegas and will have plentiful cap room to attack free-agency.

Posted by Observer Sports on June 27, 2014 at 03:00 AM | Permalink

Comments

A good night all around. We were one pick away from getting Hood instead of Hairston but PJ should be fine if the character issues reside.

Posted by: John | Jun 27, 2014 7:18:04 AM

Two value picks and opening up more cap space. Takes time to determine if picks can play, but that is a good job by Cho. In the past we took players too high and would never pull a move like that to free up money.

Posted by: Mike T. | Jun 27, 2014 7:24:33 AM

Great draft. Beautifully orchestrated by Cho. Two high upside picks, should be starters in 2-3 years. Top 5 in the East.

Posted by: Biere | Jun 27, 2014 7:55:52 AM

great night cap's the new arena look nicely.
I think Noah and Al starting by mid season and then sign a good FA SG and all of a sudden starting 5 say of...
PG-Kemba
SG- Gordon Haywood maybe
SF-MKG
PF-Noah
C- Al

now that could be a solid top 4 eastern team

Posted by: Season Ticket Holder | Jun 27, 2014 8:03:09 AM

A masterful draft. I don't think any team did better. Vonleh, if he lives up to his Bosh-like potential, could end up being one of the top 5 players to emerge out of this draft. Hairston, if not for some off court issues, would have been a lottery pick. He's ready to step in right now and contribute on both sides of the floor. And people are going to be surprised with Samaj, who will prove to be one of the second round sleepers in this draft. This guy can play both sides of the floor at point while knocking down some threes. He's worked hard to improve his game, and in time, he could be a capable backup for Kemba.

It is very difficult to fill current needs, add upside, and reduce salary commitments in one draft as we've done here. Now we have even more cap space and flexibility to land one or two quality free agents. Why not some combination of Stephenson, Ariza, & Gortat, solidifying our starting unit and weakening some of our Eastern Conference competition in the process?

Land the right free agents, and we should be a top 4 team in the Eastern Conference, easily winning a first round playoff series. Depending on the makeup of the Heat and Bulls (does Carmelo join the latter?), we may even make the Finals. I don't see Indiana as a threat, particularly if we sign Lance Stephenson.

Posted by: Jeff | Jun 27, 2014 8:30:49 AM

Was I the only one mildly upset that the Hornets allowed themselves to be used by Miami to get Lebron's newest BFF?

Really...we're helping the Heat of all teams, and for very little in return?

Posted by: Hornet Fan | Jun 27, 2014 8:36:14 AM

Jeff - Christon was traded, so he will not be backing up Kemba

Posted by: RB Ron | Jun 27, 2014 8:46:08 AM

Guess you're right. To the Thunder? Looks like we'll also be needing a backup point guard in free agency.

Posted by: Jeff | Jun 27, 2014 8:48:55 AM

Still wish we selected a shooter with the #9 selection over a project. Without being able to stretch the court, Big Al will see more double teams in "Important" games (maybe not throughout the entire season, but most certainly in the playoffs.

The organization with this cap room is probably going after Harrison Barnes, Gordan Heywood, or Chandler Parsons. My choice would be Chandler Parsons as he drives to the lane very well (but tough to imagine getting him if the $$ is not right)

Still need a rebounding center.

PS... If MKG does not remove that hitch in his shot, then off with his head and send him to Golden State for Barnes or wherever we can receive a great shooter.

And I understand Clifford wants more size comparing to San Antonio, but it was not the Spurs size that won the championship; it was the shooting percentage. Barnes and Chandler Parsons would do the trick.

Posted by: Hmm | Jun 27, 2014 8:50:21 AM

Now why would Cho help Riley and the Heat ? What's worse is Cho had the pt gd who could finally score , run the pick and roll and facilitate . This kid will be better running the point in a year than Kemba . What an idiot Cho continues to be . He finally made one decent pick at 9 . This kid can play and will help . McRoberts should walk bc he won't be in games at the end of games for sure . And yes , get Parsons at all costs . He can shoot , run , pass , is lengthy and plays league average defense. Henderson gets maligned but he shot at or over 40% from the arc after Neal came and took at least a shot and a half more a game . It's Mkg that doesn't spread . And all the champs had shooters and cutters . Think the Spurs , Heat and Mavs .

Posted by: Iron man | Jun 27, 2014 9:15:34 AM

I thought this was the best possible outcome. Rich Cho know what he's doing.

Posted by: Nick | Jun 27, 2014 9:41:56 AM

What Cho did last night was magical.

Posted by: Bobcat Bucks | Jun 27, 2014 9:44:09 AM

I am very disappointed they traded Powell and sold Christon. Christon is a great point guard and Powell has got a solid NBA style game. I thought we finally made some great picks including the two first rounders. Maybe they needed roster space - I don't know.

Now I hope they can somehow get Chandler Parsons, resign McRoberts and trade MKG.

Posted by: Dom | Jun 27, 2014 9:47:08 AM

This was a very good draft for the Hornets. It might prove to be the best draft since Cho was hired; time will tell.

Vonleh has great potential. So does Cody, but Vonleh has some physical advantages over him - strength, wing span - which will matter.
At this point, both are projects who need developing. This raises the question: are we still pursuing Josh McRoberts?
If yes, where do we find minutes to develop two young PFs with high potential?
If not, are Michael Jordan and coach Clifford ready to be patient with covering the 4 position with two projects who are years away from peaking?
Of course, it's not impossible to re-sign Josh McR and trade Cody. I don't think Cody has high trade value at this stage of his career; if there is no quality return in such a trade, I'd say it's not worth it - and patience with developing players is preferable.

P.J. is a top 10 draft talent, who was dragged so low in the draft by the "baggage" he carries from Chapel Hill. I think many GMs who skipped him will be sorry in a few years. My impression of him is that he made some mistakes and he understands this; but he's not at all a "bad guy", or a knucklehead. That's past, and he'll be fine (off the court too).

He's the offensive weapon that Hendo can't be. P.J. also has defensive potential that wasn't fully tapped yet. Coach Clifford will make sure it will be put to good use.

I was always supportive of Hendo, and I was praising everything that's good about his game.
But, he doesn't have that scoring instinct, that desire to be a decisive factor in offense.
I was excited with the offensive numbers Hendo put up after the All Stars break 2013. It didn't happen before, it didn't happen again afterwards. That was contract year performance, and even in a contract year, Hendo pushed himself to his limits for that limited period only, not for the whole season.
His demeanor in the vast majority of games, including last season, says one thing: he already reached his ceiling and we need improvement at SG.

Welcome PJ!

Posted by: Sandy | Jun 27, 2014 10:29:03 AM

In two seasons at Xavier, Christon averaged 16.2 points, 4.4 assists, 2.8 rebounds and 1.4 steals in 64 career contests. Christon became only the second player in school history to hit the 1,000-point mark as a sophomore.

Christon was a unanimous 2014 First Team All-Big East Conference selection and a member of the 2014 All-Big East Tournament team. After leading the conference in scoring during his freshman season, Christon was named the Atlantic-10 Conference Rookie of the Year. He scored in double-figures in 50 of his last 53 games, including the final 22 contests of the 2013-14 season.

This kid can play - and we just sold him? He was the perfect backup for Kemba - Hornets blew it on that pick.

Posted by: Dom | Jun 27, 2014 10:42:30 AM

I liked the Vonleh pick. McDermott made 45% from 3, Vonleh 49% and he has the physical defensive presence that McDermott lacked. And with P.J. as a #2, added to Big Al and Kemba the Hornets are more competitive and a team to be reckoned with. Outstanding draft! Go Hornets!!!

Posted by: Chuck | Jun 27, 2014 10:43:20 AM

Getting Chandler Parsons - if possible - would be great. But, it's very iffy.

Posted by: Sandy | Jun 27, 2014 10:43:57 AM

Sandy, I agree with your thoughts on PJ. I hate the Heels - but i think PJ is a major talent. I view him as a James Harden/JR Smith blend. Henderson just doesn't play selfish - and all the great ones are selfish. It will be interesting to see how Hendo plays now that there is someone to push him. He could play great - he has it in him. We could also see a lot of Kemba, Hendo and PJ on the floor together...

Posted by: Dom | Jun 27, 2014 10:56:54 AM

Haywood leaving puts Biyombo as the backup center? Or maybe Zeller's getting bumped over? That could be problematic, so I imagine we'll pick up a backup center somewhere along the lines.

Also wouldn't be surprised to see Livingstone sign again.

Much as it may annoy the ABC fans, I also wouldn't be at all surprised to see McAdoo in camp.

Posted by: BullCityDog | Jun 27, 2014 11:07:08 AM

They need a veteran back up at the point. If they address it in free agency, this all makes perfect sense.

Posted by: Steve | Jun 27, 2014 11:08:14 AM

Ramon Sessions.

Posted by: Sandy | Jun 27, 2014 11:11:28 AM

Zeller is going to end up Vonleh's backup.

Posted by: Jason | Jun 27, 2014 12:04:34 PM

I thought they'd keep Christon, but dealing him tells me they want to win now and will try to pick up a backup point guard with experience in free agency: Livingston, Sessions, Patty Mills are all options. Or they could pick up a two guard like Stephenson who can run the offense at times, allowing him to play on the court for stretches with Henderson, Neal, or Hairston. That's one of the advantages of Stephenson, he gives you flexibility, allowing the team to play big at times or alongside a smaller shooter like Neal.

Here's the amazing part of what the Hornets have achieved. They could actually sign someone like Stephenson or Ariza and still have enough cap space left to pick up a backup point guard and a third veteran free agent. You want Ray Allen to be the spot-up shooter for 20 minutes a night that some anticipated us getting from Stauskas or McDermott? Well we could probably afford him as our third signing if he'd play in Charlotte. Or make a run at Gortat, Stephenson, and Sessions? We might be able to get all three. This is going to be one tough Hornets team.

Posted by: Jeff | Jun 27, 2014 12:09:18 PM

We didnt have a Haywood last yr so i dont think we will miss him as a backup center. Yes Bizmack is what he is....a rebounder/defender and a good one at that who can play 10-15 mins a game max in a backup role

Posted by: I am your father | Jun 27, 2014 12:28:31 PM

we are going to be dangerous running the floor with our size and athleticism while Zeller/Vonleh are on the floor (probably not together)

And when its time to grind it out Big Al can take care of that. The roster is looking good, good bye Josh McRoberts we can use that $5 mill on a solid Point Guard and the other $10 mill on another shooter

Hornets will be good for the next 5 yrs regardless of Al leaves in 2

Posted by: I am your father | Jun 27, 2014 12:32:08 PM

I would pick up the big center out of AZ State as a rookie free agent. I would also bring in McAdoo as a rookie free agent and see if he can cut it. I hate UNC - but that kid has always had talent just didn't seem to figure out how to play consistent or shoot free throws.

Posted by: Dom | Jun 27, 2014 12:53:04 PM

I love the fact that they had the balls to take the best talent even when it wasn't the biggest need and presumably our top targets outside of stauskas were still available. vonleh might be an elite guy and he might be a bust (in terms of a top 10 pick) but he's going to be an nba caliber big either way. solid pick just like zeller was last year.

i'll take vonleh and zeller and cap space over zeller and an overpaid mcroberts anyday.

the trades.......you guys are making too much about "helping" lebron. we got handed a check from miami just to make sure they got him. they were going to get him anyways and we were going to get hairston anyways. so it was either hairston or hairston plus a check. obvious move.

the haywood deal was really interesting. if we keep gee.....i think we could have had a better value in keeping haywood for another deal and drafting micic to be a project/stash guy at point. or draft mcadoo. but if we did this to waive gee......brilliant as it clears even more cap space off the books for free agency. every little bit helps.

zeller/vonleh/jefferson/biz is not only a SOLID front court for the now, it's a SOLID front court for the next 10 years (future al jefferson sold separately).

hairston gives us the shooter we needed and he's a far better fit than mcdermott (not the better player - on an island), better than harris and probably hood, too. way better value getting him at 24-26 with a check than taking one of those guys over vonleh.


now we're looking at 39 million plus vonleh plus hairston, presumably around 3.5m, so 42.5 committed to 9 guys, plus jeffrey taylor for another million making ~43.5 million to 10 guys. with no real hole other than pg. cap projected at 63.2 gives us max money for any of the 5th year guys and THEN SOME, and almost enough to legitimately get into the discussion for carmello (he'll never sign here). definitely enough to absorb love +extension if we can talk the timberwolves into vonleh, henderson, rod higgins, corey higgins, every future 2nd rounder, 2 firsts, the rights to primoz brezec, gana diop, rufus, all excess bobcats memorabilia and apparel, and a couple burgers from bad daddy's.

i mean I think that's a pretty solid package compared to what other teams can offer.

assuming we don't do that........i think eric bledsoe deserves the most attention (won't get it), i don't see a really good use for this cap space this summer. I would honestly use it to take bad contracts and gather more draft picks for future trades. get the bulls to give up all the future 1s they can to take on boozer's one year and then buy him out. or the knicks with amare and make him a big man coach immediately.

i just don't see the point in a guy like stephenson unless you give indiana henderson (interesting scenario). I don't see monroe at all at this point. i don't see hayward. I don't see turner unless you can convince him to be the backup pg (which would be a big time move if they could).

hard to visualize better use of the cap space than trades at this point. well positioned though.....complete starting 5 and a solid bench already in place. and still really young.


cannot believe that mcadoo didn't get drafted at all. dude is so much better than anybody that went in the 2nd round and several guys that went in the first. he epitomizes what is wrong with nba scouting these days. i know he'll prob get picked up by somebody but between him this year and seth curry last year.....it's senseless. is he a superstar like they thought he was 2 years ago? no. is he a rotation caliber player absolutely? is aaron gordon definitely better? nope. vonleh? nope, not definitely. randle? yeah probably, but not necessarily.

he would be a good guy to grab now with a cheap guarantee....play him in summer league at the 3 and see what happens. he's going to get a pretty good euroleague offer otherwise.

Posted by: charlottean | Jun 27, 2014 12:57:46 PM

Iron Man, have you ever watched a Bobcats/Hornets game? As every draft grade has shown today, the Hornets have A's across the board on this fantastic draft. Cho is the best GM in the business, bar none.

Posted by: Truth | Jun 27, 2014 1:00:04 PM

Why do you have to give up Henderson to make sense of the Stephenson (or let's say Ariza) move? Would it be so bad to keep Henderson as an energy guy off the bench? I think he'd be very effective against opposing bench players even on elite teams. Or if you don't want to pay both of them and figure out enough minutes to keep Henderson happy, why not sign Stephenson out right and trade Henderson to a team with cap space for a future pick?

Posted by: Jeff | Jun 27, 2014 1:14:55 PM

I would love to see McRoberts resigned. Anyone who watched the clinic put on by the champion Spurs will understand the value of having bigs who can pass. Shooters alone wasn't enough. Forcing rotation by passing actually wore down defenses. This often left shooters wide open in each Spurs series. I also think that Biz is a great backup center. He rebounds and plays tough defense. We have one of the best offensive centers in the league. Would you want him being replaced by ANY backup for more than 15 minutes per game? We are moving in a positive direction. I think the addition of PJ holds a lot of promise. He has good size and can even fill in at SF at times. I hope that the failure of anyone to mention Jeff Taylor means that fans and management have given up on him. He was really coming on strong before the injury.

Posted by: Jimm | Jun 27, 2014 1:28:47 PM

The Spurs are a different team. If McRoberts went to the Spurs, the passing clinic would continue. The passing clinic will continue there without him. On the Bobcats, McRoberts contributed to offensive flow, but it wasn't quite a passing clinic. More like a team that won with defense, post-play and clutch Kemba shots on the way to winning four more games than they lost in the regular season, four less games than they won in the playoffs.

If the Hornets are going to make noise this year, move up to a top four seed and win a round or two in the playoffs, they need to upgrade two of their five starters from last year. By opting out, McRoberts made his Bobcats self eligible for a Hornets upgrade.

It's not slight of hand. It's evolution.

No passing on progress.

Posted by: Jeff | Jun 27, 2014 2:04:53 PM

This was by far the best draft Charlotte has had since the new arena was built, period!!!!! Not only the players, but the strategy used to help out with more money in free agency to continue to address needs. As for Vonleh, he's still young and can run the floor as well as shoot the outside jumper and handle the ball. He's gives us depth off the bench and also if nothing else free throws that Biz just can't shoot. Also, with McRoberts choosing to test the market it gives us another alternative. However, prior to joining the
Bobcats/Hornets, McRoberts career was on life-support and we totally revived him. We didn't help the Heat, the Heat helped us. They showed their hand and Cho played poker and won. He got what we wanted in PJ as well as the 55th pick which we benefited from in the trade as well as a future 2nd round pick. We have a lot of firepower for the FA market and worse case, we can deal Henderson and someone else for another shooter/slasher. Henderson hasn't been consistent and as SG he's not nowhere at the level of 3pt shooter as Kemba who shoots 50% behind the arc. Also, PJ gives us more versatility as a SG than Henderson in size and scoring.

Posted by: qcdude | Jun 27, 2014 2:13:53 PM

No excited about Taylor's return more than anything.
I mean the team could shape up as follows with still be under the cap

PG - Kemba, Sessions (cheap)
SG- Gordon from Utah, Hendo, PJ, Taylor could also play here sometimes
SF- MKG, Taylor, Gordon again can play here
PF- Vonleh, Zeller
C- AL, Biz,

And that leaves you lot's of money to resign Kemba and I would let Biz walk at this point after the season if he doesn't come along or trade. So following year can pay Al to stay or get someone else.
Team looks solid and playoff bound for 2-3 years as far as I can see.
Challenge will be when these other east coast slugs get going.

Posted by: Season Ticket Holder | Jun 27, 2014 2:14:36 PM

Cho moves down 2 spots and Miami throws in the 55th pick, 2019s 2nd rounder, and cash. Is Cho that good or Miami that bad? Seems like a lot for 2 spots.

Posted by: JoseFresco | Jun 27, 2014 2:31:44 PM

If this was changed from the hornets to the bobcats, there would only be three comments here. Bandwagons loading up fast.

Posted by: remeberthe cats | Jun 27, 2014 3:52:31 PM

It's the opposite of band wagoning. It's loyalty. To the Hornets. And a 200-plus year old phrase. Come opening night, the arena will be buzzing like a hornet's nest of rebellion. Protect this hive.

Posted by: Jeff | Jun 27, 2014 5:01:09 PM

You don't get rid of elite defenders . They get rid of you . Defense is a skillset . Elite lock down defense is a rare skillset . Henderson has locked up most sgs until Sessions or Neal steps in the allow them to heat up . Not one sg has come in here and lit him up . He contains most of them and in the 4 th , locks them down as well as any top 5 sg .. Except Wade who's protected . . Mkg does the same and he's younger . Of course w the exception of James and Melo who are bullies , get protected and the size of pfs . There's no wing out there to replace eithers level of defense that's coming here . You add to them unless either one is moving on . It's easy to say make a trade but in reality , there's few out there . Then when it comes to the two way playing of Henderson , it's a bigger problem . He can't hit the open shot bc he's not a spot up shooter and has no set shot . His catch n shoot off screens was non existent last yr w Clifford as it was w Dunlap . Hairston can shoot in spot up but he's by no means an upgrade if you play him starters minutes . If you find one , Henderson is too good to sit and will be sought out . Mkg needs to be freed up but it won't probably happen here . But whatever . Both are elite or near elite defenders . You add to them and compliment them . And when you comment to make a trade for a shooter , set forth the name . The list is quite short . The enthusiasm s great for Hairston . He can shoot . But the root problem is as w Neal , Taylor ,Tolliver and Cdr , the ball never moved to get constant wide open looks . Until Cliffird demands it , designs and offense outside of dump it into Jefferson , little will change and Hairston will fail like these guys .

Posted by: Iron man | Jun 27, 2014 5:56:01 PM

What are you people missing? Hendo is a BENCH PLAYER! PJ Hairston will be the new starter at Shooting Guard, while Vonleh will start at Power Forward. This is the reason why these players were drafted and they are talented enough to step into a starting role.
There's no reason to blow this $15 million on a long term contract, as there are no free agents worthy of such money. Stephenson will NOT be a Hornet, trust me (attitude). Bledsoe or Sessions as a backup at the PG would be perfect. Biyombo's days are numbered and he may not even make the team this year.
C-Jefferson
PF-Vonleh
SF-MKG
SG-PJ
PG-Kemba

Posted by: busy bee stings ya | Jun 27, 2014 5:56:06 PM

So it is obvious they got more cash through draft picks so Rick, who do we have our sights on. I say go big but who do we want? I like the youth movement but Big Al can not do it all. Vonleh is a teenager with potential.

Posted by: kelso | Jun 27, 2014 6:23:58 PM

if mcroberts was going to get paid like a spurs role player, we all should want him back. we have 5 roster spots to fill. the problem is, he's going to get overpaid and we already have 4 rotation worthy bigs on the roster before adding another 1-3 on minimum/mid level deals.

zeller at 21 going on 22 years old is better than mcroberts at 27 or whatever he is. and allowing zeller to grow up into a REALLY good 24-26 year old is the ideal way we get better. he and MKG have the highest ceilings of anybody on the roster (vonleh included) and they should be treated that way. starting zeller is the right move and vonleh is a cheaper (and arguably more impactful) backup. mcroberts makes fancy passes but he is far from an effective playmaker. there's a huge difference. we all know that jefferson is an elite post scorer. so you can't have as bad of an offense efficiency wise as we did and consider mcroberts and kemba great when they handled the ball the most. MKG and henderson get the blame, but mkg hardly touched the ball. henderson was effective enough in his limited touches AAAAAAAAAAND those 2 are the best defenders of the bunch.

it was the right move in the draft giving mcroberts opting for more money.


jeff - i'm a big henderson supporter. my reasoning has more to do with playing time and cap management. you would be paying big money to stephenson and above mid level money to henderson for at least the next 2 years. and that's while having hairston, taylor, mkg, and kemba. seems like a bad use of cap space. i would love to keep henderson as we add guys that are better than him. he's the ideal 4th or 5th guy on a team as opposed to being the 2nd or 3rd as he has been.

I just don't think you spend 18-20 million on a duo of not elite shooting guards to share 48 minutes. better off upgrading if you feel stephenson is an upgrade (factoring in the salary increase), or not if you don't.

all that said.......you kill me with the hornets talk. they changed the name. adults should not have cared about that name. they were the bobcats almost as long as they were the hornets (10 seasons to 14). That's nothing than a marketing ploy to take advantage of idiots who will buy tickets because the name reminds them of when they were younger. it absolutely makes anybody a bandwagon fan to all of a sudden start paying attention in the past year or so.

a loyalist would be a pelican's fan right now. a homer (like myself) would have been a bobcats fan all these years even with bob johnson's bs (not as bad as shinn moving the team).

bob johnson deserved to be the egomaniac racist eff that he was and name the team the bobcats. if he hadn't ponied up 300 million, there wouldn't be a team here. and if he hadn't CHOSEN to sell the team to jordan (he had better offers) then we wouldn't have a team right now.

and if you think that's insignificant and it's a borderline birthright of charlotte to have a team, look at seattle and st. louis. if you're going to come on here and talk basketball, you're credibility is shot if you gave an ounce of an eff about whether or not they changed the name.

Posted by: charlottean | Jun 27, 2014 6:44:52 PM

Bledsoe will be a back up ..lmfao . To who ? Where ? Hairston will start over who ? Lol. He wil be lucky to play over Cdr or Taylor . Defense starts games always . He will never be an elite defender . Henderson was inconsistent . Neal was inconsistent . So was Tolliver and cdr . Why ? When the ball sticks , you can't get Rhytm . When it sticks , you can't get open looks . It sticks here .

Posted by: Iron man | Jun 27, 2014 6:52:05 PM

The talk about Stephenson coming here is ludicrous and should stop . He's not coming . Hairston is the line drawn in the sand when it comes to having guys devoid of high character . To me btw , that principle is bs to a large extent . Unless you're dealing w a guy like Stephenson . He's a drain on teamnates , the team , the lockeroom and overall spirit and morale . He's impossible to control . They will sign him . You don't need he and Henderson which wastes too much cap space when Neal n
Henderson compliment each other and are a net positive at sg . They would be better if there were a pt gd that facilitates and were in a passing system . Period . Stephenson never averaged what Henderson did in a passing system . His stats are padded w the second unit where he dominates the ball . His stats won't remain the same w Jefferson and Kemba . He averaged 10 points if you exclude the one 25 point game . He's getting 9 m to stay which they will pay . Once here and he doesn't get the ball , he will fight Kemba in the lockeroom . You think Jax was a headache . Mj knows he will be in his office demanding a raise the first time he scores over his average . Then it will be impossible to ship him at the price you bought him . I could think of ten more reasons he's not coming , not worth the risk and why it's impossible a 4 yr contract w him at any price will not be a run thru hell . He's not an upgrade or for sure much of one when you look closely at how his stats were generated .

Posted by: Iron man | Jun 27, 2014 7:09:58 PM

Speaking of 300 million, that's about the additional value of the team after the name change. If the name change didn't matter so much, why did the name change stoke the team's valuation by third parties? Why did the name change result in more sponsor sales? Why did the name change result in more season ticket sales? And if all that relates/contributes to more people attending the games, a better home court advantage, a more profitable team willing to spend more on free agents, and ultimately a better, more competitive team on the court, then the bounce of history is just plain longer than the trajectory you're suggesting. This goes way back, DeLorean style, pre-Bobcats, pre-purple-and-teal, pre-coliseum, all the way to Cornwallis.

"A hornet's nest of rebellion."

That's real history, the history that put Charlotte on the map when basketball cities like Chicago (incorporated 1837) didn't even exist yet. When basketball didn't even exist yet.

That's the stuff of legend. The stuff of America. The stuff that makes a uniform more than just a uniform.

Posted by: Jeff | Jun 27, 2014 7:21:42 PM

Ironwoman talking about "pt gd" and Kemba Walker again. His psychotic obsession continues. Even NASCAR didn't say anything, yet here comes Ironwoman to ruin a perfectly good draft night. Way to go loser!

Looks like Higgins was the reason for all these wasted draft picks. Glad to see Cho in charge.

Posted by: D.W.G. | Jun 27, 2014 7:37:20 PM

Posts will now be accepted if only 50 words or less people. Blah blahblah blah blah. All others will bounce.

Posted by: RickBonnell | Jun 27, 2014 9:12:22 PM

Jefferson / biz centers . Vonleh/Zeller /Tolliver .pfs .mkg/Deng /cdr sfs .

Bledsoe( Neal and assets ) /Kemba ..pt gds ..Reddick (swap out Henderson) / Hairston /Taylor . Top 4 team in the East . Idiots like Dim Witted goofball(DWG) must thereupon take bb 101 classes to post .

Posted by: Iron man | Jun 27, 2014 10:42:40 PM

Good draft. Cho is beginning to flex his muscle. It's possible we drafted our #2 and #3 options last night. No doubt #3 and #4.

We are young, athletic and ready to run.

Posted by: qdog112 | Jun 27, 2014 10:59:34 PM

Lets move on with talking about MKG and his ceiling. Leave that for Defensive Tackles and Inside Linebackers. I like the guy, but hustle and motor are for the NFL, not for the NBA.

The team that advance in the playoffs are skilled in both sides of the court (primarily on Offense). If the kidd could shoot, just a little, I would be all for keeping him. But when you say ceiling, Paul George, Kawhi Lenoard, etc (there are tons more) but their ceiling are judge offensively. Normally they are displayed early in their career to warrant the term "ceiling" or "upside". Even Danny Green who is a liability on defense is a one trick pony on Offense but has a very high ceiling based on his offensive game.

The NBA is now a team defense game, not a one on one game. Teams will do enough to distract your shot only to rebound if you miss. See Miami, San Antonio, Chicago, and Memphis. Team defense focuses one defender with a triangle defense like support system. There are two guys ready to rotate over in situations if required.

Jeffery Taylor has more of that than MKG. If MKG has that much of a ceiling, how come he is not on the floor the last 8 minutes of the game (which by the way are teams true starting 5; not the ones at the beginning of the game.). Again, love the kidd's heart, but seriously, not after two years, its obvious.

I hope he can prove me wrong. If not, say goodbye to him sometime after the beginning of free agency and bring in some shooters.

Posted by: Hmm | Jun 28, 2014 1:18:16 AM

I don't think drafting Vonleh makes McRoberts expendable at all. I strongly disagree about that sentiment. If you are expecting big things from Vonleh next year, I think you're going to be disappointed. He has a tremendous skillset, don't get me wrong, but he was somewhat of a non-factor in the Big 10 last year...the closest NCAA equivalent to the NBA. He's not a playmaker by any means and he lacks awareness and is prone to pick up cheap fouls defensively. Plus he has the assertiveness issues that Wiggins has.

That said, once he gets used to the NBA game, I think he will develop into a possible all-star. 6'10, 240 pound PF's who can shoot and handle the ball like he can don't grow on trees. He reminds me of a more athletic Carlos Boozer with range. I thought Zach Levine had more upside and would be the better pick because he can fill Kemba's gaps better but he may be further away than Vonleh.

I like PJ as a situational player off the bench like I believe he was drafted as. Don't like him as a starter/replacement to Hendo. He's never going to be the natural defender Hendo is. PJ also isn't a good enough 1 on 1 player to be go-to guy or a good enough defender/off the ball player to play off a go to guy yet. Basically he's never going to be Harden/Wade/Beal but is not Affalo/Matthews/Thompson at this point. At 24 though, I think a potential 6th man of the year candidate is pretty solid.

Didn't like the whole Napier thing either. If we wanted PJ all along, we should've just drafted him. We're going to be pissed if Napier's killing us in the playoffs with Lebron lol.

Posted by: cornchip | Jun 28, 2014 5:42:04 AM

Agree w you Cornchip . Except bloggers and fans don't get mad here when players they could have had , go on to star . They love Cho notwithstanding . Think Bledsoe , Lowry , Liliard , Carter Williams , Burke ? And now Napier .

Hmmm. You overstate team defense . You still must have athletic defenders , a shot blocker or two in one or two of them , length , good on ball and individual help defenders etc in the defensive scheme . Vonleh may have disappeared in the past on offense but he will be an instant upgrade on defense at pf in Clifford's defensive schemes over McRoberts . Mkg , Taylor , Henderson , Vonleh , Kemba ( help d) can all play defense . The stats will support it along w possibly wins .

Posted by: Iron man | Jun 28, 2014 8:07:12 AM

We would be more pissed if we passed on Hairston and he kills us in the playoffs,

Posted by: Jim | Jun 28, 2014 8:13:57 AM

Stephenson is the guy, in part, because of his attitude. If he channels that attitude in the right direction, he'll become the kind of guy who changes the outcome of games, series, irrespective of position or nature of contribution. Jordan benefited from a guy with attitude before, a guy who found a way to impact a game no matter what, five time champion and one of the all time great rebounders despite being only 6'7".

Without Dennis Rodman, Jordan does not get the second three peat, certainly does not beat the Jazz two years in a row.

We need our Dennis. We need Lance Stephenson.

Posted by: Jeff | Jun 28, 2014 11:44:01 AM

You underrate two hall of famers in Pippien and Mj . Plus a brilliant coach that made changes in game and after games . You as well forget the incredible passing system the triangle brought about where bigs passed to bigs making the extra interior pass for an easy bucket close in . Rodman was one of many pivotal factors . The Bulls had a defense that usually had 4 guys on the floor that were great defenders , long , rotated well and blocked shots . Rodman was not alone out there . Despite the ball dominance of Mj , he shared the hell out of the ball and passed out of doubles willingly . Comparing Stephenson to Rodman as to his impact is unfounded . He can't impact the game in rebounding , on ball defense , help defense or anything for that matter to Rodmans level . Rodman would have locked King James up as Marion did . James was not concerned w
Stephenson outside of his silly antics which were counterproductive to his own team .

Posted by: Iron man | Jun 28, 2014 2:23:45 PM

If Larry Bird was concerned with those antics, he wouldn't want to re-sign Stephenson. If the Bulls were concerned with antics, like Rodman wrestling in-game with Malone, the Bulls wouldn't have wanted to play with him. Stephenson is a difference make who helped his team reach two Eastern Finals in a row. Plus signing him weakens the Pacers.

Posted by: Jeff | Jun 28, 2014 2:44:53 PM

I love Stephenson's game and think he is the guy if we can't woo McRoberts back for cheap (and obviously we would take him over McRoberts if given the choice). Stephenson would instantly be the best playmaker/most skilled player on our team if he came here. But I would question his attitude and work ethic if we overpaid him.

Would he think that he's the primary option on offense if we paid him big money? Because he is the #3 best scorer behind Big Al and Kemba and would fill the connect the dots role like McRoberts does/did.

Posted by: cornchip | Jun 28, 2014 3:41:29 PM

Bird is in a bad position . If he doesn't re-sign him , they get worse . Don't
think for one minute , Birds not concerned w that live grenade . There's a dearth of sgs that can play offense and defense ESP ones that average double figures w above league average defense . These guys do the most running of any position on the ct , if they play both ends . Bird told him to stop clowning . It impacted the team . He still went out an clowned . There's zero chance he gets here . He's not stupid either . He knows his skills ( ball handling and usesage ) will me reduced here . These guys talk . They look at games too . So do their agents and friends .

All this talk about McRoberts is still vitally needed is garbage . If Kemba ran point , McRoberts would be greatly expendable now . If you want to upgrade , you have to insert Vonleh in the lineup from day one . I like McRoberts . He could help the Spurs if DIAW walks and not be half as exposed on defense . He would get some shooting lessons from one of the best who has taught all of them over there how to stroke it exactly the same . Leonard couldn't shoot at all when he first showed up .

This is going to interesting this yr bc Mkgs 8 m QO situation is coming closer each day . As the talent gets better around him , his offensive production gets less or at best little different than the yr before . And there's so much talk about shooters and the need for a vet at sf who can play both ends ( Deng , Parsons ,Hatward ) . Design a play or two . Give hima chance . Flash him in the post so he catches the defense off guard , giving them no time to react like they do w Wade . Like they did in the 21 pt outburst he had . Don't let my favorite player go down like this . If not ,ship him and stop letting him rot on the bench in 4 th quarters .this is cruel . This looks bad too for the 2 nd pick in the draft to be done like this .

Posted by: Iron man | Jun 28, 2014 6:53:31 PM

"This was by far the best draft Charlotte has had since the new arena was built, period!"

Since the new arena was built? How is that relevant?

You slurpers NEVER fail to amaze me....

Michael Scotto: Source: Boston Celtics passed on Noah Vonleh partly due to character concerns. #NBADraft Twitter @MikeAScotto
Boston Celtics, Charlotte Hornets, Draft, Noah Vonleh - See more at: http://hoopshype.com/rumors/tag/noah_vonleh#sthash.k84SEZi6.dpuf

--------------------

Danny Ainge, a veritable genius when compared to Air Min, Yes Co. & Cho-pet, passes on Vonleh due to "character issues"...just super awesome!

So we draft another "project" who ALSO has "character issues" and all you slurping fools are ready to throw in the towel on Cody Zeller?!? Dang morons...

Hairston, nothing need be said about his character, res ipsa loquitur...

As usual the Boobs get f'g LAPPED in the NBA draft.....joke.

Posted by: NASTAR99 | Jun 28, 2014 7:59:59 PM

^^^^nice one Reek. Nice one.

Posted by: James | Jun 28, 2014 11:48:22 PM

You mean Danny Ainge, the one who drafted Marcus Smart? That Danny Ainge?

Posted by: Mike T. | Jun 29, 2014 12:04:55 AM

"Slurpers" has always been a Procton term!

Posted by: Nastar 69s men | Jun 29, 2014 10:35:59 AM

Michael Procton

Posted by: Nastar 69s men | Jun 29, 2014 10:38:02 AM

I really like this draft, especially how the Hornets were gutsy enough to grab Vonleh over McD. Like every other team, we won't know how successful it truly was until these kids play, or don't, in the league. It's hard to see how we were "lapped", so soon after the draft.

Posted by: Rob Butler | Jun 29, 2014 11:37:24 AM

Love it when you morons start with the name calling, signals defeat on your part ;)

Yup, Danny Ainge...ol' 3 Ring Ainge. NBA Exec of Year Ainge. 136-90 Coach Ainge.
The same Danny Ainge who had the foresight and budget to go out and sign Brad Stevens, the most exciting young coach in the game, to a long term deal...locked him up. 1,002 3Pointers Ainge. 4,199 Assists Ainge.

We counter with midget who sports a law degree from some second rate school. Far as I can tell the guy never played hoops at any level. Unlike others in "management" with the Boobs he can add and subtract but cap space is useless if you cant evaluate and attract talent. Cho has had a litany of high picks already none of which show any signs being an all-star...but he sure has passed over a lot of players that are a lock to be all-stars for years to come.

Posted by: NASTAR99 | Jun 29, 2014 12:19:14 PM

Here's the blueprint. Trade one or two more contracts for second round draft picks and cap space. Sign Pau Gasol, Ariza or Stephenson, and a backup point guard (Mills, Sessions, or Livingston). Start Kemba, Stephenson or Ariza, MKG, Gasol, Jefferson with a deep, young, athletic bench and a veteran backup point guard. Compete in 2015 Eastern Conference Finals.

Posted by: Jeff | Jun 29, 2014 1:12:38 PM

i don't know where bonnell is getting that 15 million cap space figure. it's definitely around 20 unless you are counting a cap hold for mcroberts.

i don't care how luxurious his hair is, and how sweet his passes are........signing mcroberts at the beginning of free agency would be a bad move. signing him for more than a 1 year deal would be a bad move. if the unlikely scenario happens that we strike out on top targets and then mcroberts is still available and willing to sign a big 1 year deal.......great.

but if we renounce his rights, we have around 20 million in cap space. and then the MLE and BAE beyond that. as stated earlier, I just don't see too many good uses of that cap space in this crowd. besides kevin love of course.

Posted by: charlottean | Jun 29, 2014 1:43:54 PM

I think the name calling starts when you go out of your way to find something wrong with a draft that most consider well orchestrated. Obviously it will take some time to determine how good it is. But most analysts have graded it as a success. They seem to have a lot of momentum on and off the court right now. Not sure where there are many negatives. If they get a solid player or 2 in free agency it will have been a nice follow up to their 43 win season.

Posted by: Mike T. | Jun 29, 2014 2:00:04 PM

"... Cap space is useless unless you evaluate and attract talent " This is pure unmitigated brilliance . What Cho does is something a math major in a community college can do . All this talk that he slicked the Heat and reduced payroll by 2 m w some ingenious maneuvering is garbage too . All the other war rooms had this in mind as well and it wasn't some never before considered chess move by Cho . Ainge is not a dummy . Vonleh was dropping fast as a rock . Ainge wasn't the only Gm that passed him by while in a free fall to 9 . Notwithstanding , to get back to the playoffs in the newly improved East , McRoberts can't start at pf . Zeller should have started during the break no matter what . If he's bulked up , he's the starter . All his problems stemmed from strength n conditioning . His jumper will fall . Vonleh will compliment him , shot block , spread the floor by bringing a big out and play way better on ball n help defense than McRoberts who's horrific in that regard . I agree if you re-sign McRoberts , then you've failed . He can flat out play mind you . But his emergence and need came from the dismal failures of Kemba running point . Zeller can pass from the mid post . It's an easier pass to cutters and bigs . Big to big passing and passing to cutters is shockingly missing from Clifford's offense . It wasn't from the Spurs or Bulls . It was to a degree from the Heats offense .

If the Hornets got Livy as back up . Parsons by any means necessary , this team flies . Hayward is overrated and can't play defense . Best to take a close look at his arc shooting as of late too . He's too pricey and Utah is matching . Let's see why Vonleh dropped . He was going top 5 . Hope it's not something which will cause him not to be available in the future . Anything else can be dealt w . High character stuff is overplayed . But here , it was something that gave a number of Gms pause .

Posted by: Iron man | Jun 29, 2014 4:00:29 PM

Who the moron going on and on about the CBA not allowing supervised practices in the summer?

**Clifford plans to keep Hairston and fellow first-round pick Noah Vonleh very busy this off-season. He immediately told them the best way to prepare for their rookie seasons is to be in the Hornets’ practice gym daily, working with the coaching staff and the strength-and-conditioning staff. Clifford expects that to start on Monday.**

http://www.charlotteobserver.com/2014/06/27/5010044/hairston-convinced-the-hornets.html#.U7CvgNq9KSN#storylink=cpy

Posted by: NASTAR99 | Jun 29, 2014 8:35:32 PM

Practices. Uh no. Workouts are completely different. What the hell is wrong with you any way. At least attempt to be right. Teams cannot "practice" during the off season. Watching guys or helping them workout is completely different. NBA 101. I am not into name calling, but you should expect it with inaccurate statements you continually make.

"short answer: No. Training camp can only begin a set number of days prior to the start of the regular season, as specified by the collective bargaining agreement. A team’s players can independently agree to congregate somewhere – usually at the team’s training facility – at any point throughout the off-season. In a typical off-season, a team’s young players – draft choices and first- and second-year players – will spend nearly all of their summers working out at the Pistons’ practice facility. Veterans cycle in and out to work with Arnie Kander and the coaching staff. Once September rolls around, more and more players find their way to the facility. It’s typical that by mid-September, all but a few senior veterans are in town and five-on-five scrimmages are held nearly daily. But organized workouts, supervised by the coaches, are not allowed"

Posted by: Mike T. | Jun 29, 2014 9:42:34 PM

MJ has received an unfair rep in terms of draft picks. Everyone forgets that Kwame Brown had the same "best player" high acclaim as Dwight Howard as a high school senior. They also forget that we needed a shooter/scorer when nearly everyone thought that Morrison was the best coming out of college. They also tend to forget that Sean May dominated every front court the Tarheels played against on their way to a national championship. Ironically, all three of these draft decisions were applauded on many fronts when they were made. They only became bad decisions after they didn't pan out as most "experts" expected. Of course, this was after the fact.

This was a great draft for the Hornets. Luckily, I pull for the Spurs when they are playing anyone other than the Hornets. They drafted Kyle Anderson with the last (30th) pick in the first round and a numbers of teams will regret passing him over a couple years from now. There is much more to basketball than athleticism....just ask Bird.

Posted by: Jimm | Jun 29, 2014 11:55:34 PM

One other things on Jordan, there is no need to throw out the performance numbers of others in an effort to suggest his inferiority in any way. If someone must do this, then remember the number four. There are exactly four billionaires in the state of North Carolina. Luck alone will seldom get you into that class. You gotta have some smarts.

Posted by: Jimm | Jun 30, 2014 12:06:38 AM

Jimm . You should not get into things you know little about . There were red flags raised before any of those three were taken . I will deal w the one who would have been the easiest to defend if I were Mj . It's Sean May . He did dominate a number of front lines . But that was college . In college , he was not athletic . He posted in the low block and scored well . The problem was he was only at best 6 ft 8 , pudgy , not very strong , no shot outside a low post turn around to any degree and slow . He as w Biz ,was laterally slow and therefore couldn't defend pfs and had to be stuck behind centers . The hardest think to teach big guys is aggression . A lack of aggression is what was the root cause of problems w Kwame , May and now Hibbert . But to say May was a bad decision only after he didnt pan out is false , disengenous and patently misguided . I won't get into the other two other than to say Morrison was weak before the draft and after ( I think he was sick and had some disorder ) and Brown was a stiff and didnt have the defensive impact to fall back on . However , when he came back here , he was better , salvageable and should never have left . I thought he played well in Los Angeles . Howard is a stiff on offense too but he has been given the chance to develop over the yrs . The trick is to get them to take tiny steps in the lane and to increase the ball handling ( 25 dribbles w each finger ) . He demands constant lobs unlike a lot of bigs and wings . They need to do that w Zeller and Biz here but they won't . You can even set up lobs but they won't . Even for the wings but they won't . It's sickening and on Clifford .

Posted by: Iron man | Jun 30, 2014 8:35:33 AM

Its amazing that the same guy that loves the way the Spurs play also loves the lob. No one in the NBA lobs less than the Spurs. Thank god Pop doesn't coach here or you would be all over him. LMAO.

Posted by: Steve | Jun 30, 2014 8:40:49 AM

I'm not sure he was professing love for the lob, but I could be wrong...also if we are defending any aspect of MJ's management I'd be less inclined to defend those draft picks then the VERY recent moves made to rebrand the franchise. The draft history of this team is not good and fair game for criticism. But I'm hopeful we've turned the corner, time will tell.

Posted by: Rob Butler | Jun 30, 2014 9:12:47 AM

Proud to be the feeder system for the Charlotte Hornets! Go HOOSIERS!

Posted by: Seth | Jun 30, 2014 9:26:03 AM

"Luck alone will seldom get you into that class."

20% of billionaires inherit their wealth. Air Min ain't no billionaire....LOL.

"...be in the Hornets’ practice gym daily, working with the coaching staff..."

Mike T., which part of that phrase is unclear to you?

Posted by: NASTAR99 | Jun 30, 2014 10:36:36 AM

BS on the 20%. Even if so and so only inherited $500k, that's starting on 2nd base. Pinch runners don't get credit for hits.

more like 90% of billionaires. the other 10% being the rare tech guy who didn't start his company with trust fund financing.

you hate jordan. we all get that. but without jordan, there's no team here. it'd be the st. louis EI's or the seattle supersonics pt 2. and to johnson's credit (only time that phrase ever applies) he didn't have to sell to jordan or a local owner, he could have easily sold to others (he had a few bids better than jordan just inheriting the debt).

Posted by: charlottean | Jun 30, 2014 12:43:59 PM

20%, put it in your pipe and smoke it.

"...and to johnson's credit (only time that phrase ever applies) he didn't have to sell to jordan or a local owner, he could have easily sold to others (he had a few bids better than jordan just inheriting the debt)."

Complete and utter nonsense. Stern made it crystal clear the team was staying in Charlotte, period -- and Air Min was the only sucker willing to buy the Boobs and keep 'em in the "CableBox"...LOL. Hence, selling to His Minimumness was Bob's only option.

For the umpteenth time, I don't hate anyone, certainly not The Handout King. It's just that he's so so incredibly dumb, and so easy to shred... ;-)

Hey, what does Whitfield actually do for this team?

Posted by: NASTAR99 | Jun 30, 2014 2:16:11 PM

"more like 90% of billionaires."

That number isn't a good one (was probably close 25-35 years ago) but if it's what you believe, more power to you...only underscores my point.

Jimmm was suggesting "luck" doesn't get you into the billionaires club, and laughably trying to draw a between AIr Min's faux status as a paper billionaire and "smarts"...again, what a hoot!

Back to the point, the point is "luck" puts people into the billionaires clubs all, the, time -- lucky sperm club.

Posted by: NASTAR99 | Jun 30, 2014 2:32:21 PM

Stern does not mandate to whom owners can sell their teams to. he works for them, not the other way around. he didn't get in between the sacramento fiasco either, that was kevin johnson.

i also don't think jordan is smart. he's not. but he does have a few smart people in his circle that managed him to where he is now. and no....higgins and whittfield are not among them, but I also think he's starting to realize that. Fact is, any other owner would have taken the money to move the team the second the lease is up (not far off) and that much the city should be thankful for. bad team or no team, I choose bad team. and the improvement on both the business side and the basketball side in the years since jordan took over have been significant.

you have to accept that much. could it be better? no doubt. but it's progress. I never thought i'd see the day he let higgins go. he gets a trophy for that. he just does.

Posted by: charlottean | Jun 30, 2014 4:35:35 PM

"Stern does not mandate to whom owners can sell their teams to."

He sure as heck does.

If there are 3 offers, 2 hinge on moving the team, and Stern makes it clear a move will not be allowed -- a mandate has been issued.

Posted by: NASTAR99 | Jul 1, 2014 12:59:24 PM

when it's apples to apples he does. he pushes for what is good for the league. what he doesn't do is say "you must take significantly less money to keep the team in this city"

which is what johnson did.

Posted by: charlottean | Jul 1, 2014 7:16:13 PM

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