Southeast Notes: Stephenson, Jordan, Hawks

The HornetsLance Stephenson has made an issue about not getting the ball at the end of games, to which head coach Steve Clifford has responded, “To be truthful, Lance has never been a closer. That would be a new role for him,” Tom Haberstroh of ESPN.com (Insider subscription required) writes. Clifford went on to say that Stephenson is “not a star,” something that Charlotte has discovered rather quickly after signing him to a three-year, $27MM contract this past summer, notes Haberstroh. But Stevenson also isn’t being paid like a star player, and can come off of the Hornets’ books in 2016 when Charlotte can decline his team option for $9.4MM, unless he is dealt prior to then, Haberstroh adds.

Here’s the latest out of the Southeast Division:

  • Michael Jordan is finding his role as the team owner of the Hornets a humbling experience, especially this season with the team underachieving mightily thus far, Michael Wallace of ESPN.com writes. Jordan does believe that he has grown as an executive since his time with the Wizards, notes Wallace. “I’ve always considered myself a very successful owner that tries to make sound decisions,” Jordan said. “And when you make bad decisions, you learn from that and move forward. I think I’m better in that sense. I’ve experienced all of the different valleys and lows of ownership and successful business. If that constitutes me being a better owner, then I guess I am.”
  • The HawksAl Horford and Paul Millsap are still trying to develop their on-court chemistry despite this being their second season together on Atlanta’s roster, Chris Vivlamore of The Atlanta Journal-Constitution writes. This is thanks to Horford only logging 29 games last season before a torn pectoral muscle ended his 2013/14 campaign, Vivlamore adds.
  • With LeBron James gone and the added title expectations removed along with him, the Heat‘s season thus far feels far more “normal” to Dwyane Wade, Jeff Zillgitt of USA Today writes. Miami is also waiting for all its injured players to return to see just what kind of team it actually possesses prior to making any new roster moves, notes Zillgitt.

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5 Comments on "Southeast Notes: Stephenson, Jordan, Hawks"

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Z....
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Z....
1 year 9 months ago

Very odd choice of words by a coach like Steve Clifford…Wonder what the ramifications may be in his relationship with Stephenson

Eddie Scarito
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Eddie Scarito
1 year 9 months ago

I gather that Clifford knew exactly what he was saying. Stevenson is supposedly being a negative influence in Charlotte’s locker room (not a big surprise given his history), and Clifford is probably trying to take Lance down a peg or two to try to diffuse the tension between the players and put onus on himself.

Z....
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Z....
1 year 9 months ago
Man…I’m slightly dumbfounded by this situation. I really thought they made some great moves, and he was a perfect fit for them, and I thought so from the get go. I havent had the chance to watch them much, nor anyone else really, this year b/c I just havent had as much time as usual to follow the whole league the way I usually do…Honestly, I wonder how the situation is between Lance, Kemba Walker, and maybe even a Gerald Henderson. Kemba has always been one of those dribble a ton, ball stoppers, that takes more shots than he probably… Read more »
Eddie Scarito
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Eddie Scarito
1 year 9 months ago
Stevenson just wasn’t a good fit for that team. He’s not really a pure jump shooter–which is what held the Hornets back last season. They should have went for Trevor Ariza, who would have fit the team much better–performance and personality wise. The other issue, which the guys on ESPN’s PTI discussed yesterday, is that last year’s locker room chemistry for Charlotte was outstanding. But Stephenson is a toxic player to have around from all accounts. Kornheiser and Wilbon also noted correctly, that the Hornets players are too laid back to keep Stephenson in line. Which is why Clifford HAD… Read more »
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Z....
1 year 9 months ago
After losing McRoberts, they needed a playmaker, which was the fit, and Stephenson was still a 35% 3 point shooter, and then they added Marvin Williams and Brian Roberts to fill holes as well. I think they tried to address that shooting issue…Maybe its just b/c of lack of information on my part, but I just dont see it being nearly as toxic a situation with Stephenson as it is with JR Smith. I would gladly take Stephenson on my team right now. No way would I ever consider JR Smith. I’ve always felt like the attitude thing with Stephenson,… Read more »
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