Hornets Notes: Walker, Whiteside, Draft, Salary Cap

The lack of teams with cap space and a weak crop of free agent point guards could work to the Hornets’ advantage if they decide to trade Kemba Walker, writes Rick Bonnell of The Charlotte Observer. That’s the assessment of ESPN’s Bobby Marks, a former executive with the Nets, who thinks Walker will reach his peak trade value this summer. Walker has one year left on his contract, and Marks states that teams would rather pick up a player in the offseason rather than close to the trade deadline.

Addressing trade rumors during the season, team owner Michael Jordan said he would only consider moving Walker if it meant getting an All-Star in return. Marks considers that unrealistic, saying a lottery pick is likely the best the Hornets can hope for. The franchise is near the tax threshold and would like to unload one of its expensive contracts in any Walker deal, but Marks says that will only happen if Walker’s new team gets assurances he will re-sign.

There’s more today from Charlotte:

  • Hassan Whiteside would help the Hornets get younger at center, but his contract woudn’t make him a wise pickup, Bonnell cautions in a separate piece. Whiteside clashed with Heat coach Erik Spoelstra this season over reduced playing time, and there are indications out of Miami that the team would like to deal him. Charlotte has Dwight Howard signed for one more year at $23.8MM, while Whiteside is owed $25.4MM next season with a $27MM player option for 2019/20. Bonnell doubts the investment in Whiteside would be worth it, considering the NBA is trending away from traditional low-post centers.
  • In another story, Bonnell analyzes the Hornets’ draft prospects and takes a look at new GM Mitch Kupchak’s drafting history. Bonnell identifies a top eight of DeAndre Ayton, Luka Doncic, Marvin Bagley III, Jaren Jackson Jr., Mo Bamba, Michael Porter, Wendell Carter and Trae Young, and states that anyone else has a reasonable chance of being available when Charlotte picks at No. 11.
  • This year’s extended playoffs, which feature a seventh game in both conference finals for the first time since 1979, will provide the NBA with extra revenue that will affect next year’s salary cap, Bonnell tweets. That should raise the $101MM cap projection at least slightly and benefit cash-strapped teams like the Hornets, who already have $117.9MM in committed salary for next season.
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17 thoughts on “Hornets Notes: Walker, Whiteside, Draft, Salary Cap

    • mcmillankmm

      Definitely would make sense. I think they should try to get Nkitilina attached in the deal as well. At a minimum, I think Mudiay, Lance Thomas, Knicks 1st round pick, plus the 2nd they obtained from Chicago via OKC would be a nice match. Or maybe you get Courtney Lee plus the Knicks 1st for Kemba?

    • hiflew

      If they have identified a “top 8” in the draft, why would want the 9th pick for their best player?

  1. Anthonybadabucchi

    That Trade is horrible, keep Ntilikinia and our 9th pick hopefully it becomes Miles Bridges, if kemba wants to play for the Knicks he can come in free agency, don’t give up our young talent like we did in the Carmelo Anthony trade!

    • hiflew

      What are you talking about? The Knicks did better in the first Carmelo deal than the Nuggets. None of the players in that deal outperformed what Melo did in NY. Chandler and Gallinari were decent players, but neither were superstars. The two first round draft picks turned into Dario Saric and Jamal Murray, but there is no guarantee that the Knicks would have chosen them. New York would not have been a better team with the stuff they sent to Denver.

  2. camdenyards46

    The salary cap will barely affected by a few games in the playoffs. The playoffs at minimum have to be 60 games. An extra two games will affect it so little it will not matter. Maybe you can offer an extra summer league 10 day contract if that is even a thing.

    • camdenyards46

      On an estimation I came up with it would raise the cap about 150,000 dollars.

    • formerlyz

      Last year’s playoffs being so short is what caused the salary cap to fall so short of the original projections for this year

  3. Dionis

    You people saying the Knicks should give up their pick for Walker are out of your minds, let alone Frank Ntilikina.

  4. Why does people think that Kemba is worth so much? I mean he is a good player, but just a marginal/occasional all-star with one year left, without guarantees that he stays I wouldn’t give any starting player/lottery pick for him, maybe some bench garbage or bad salaries. & is not getting any younger neither, his age doesn’t fit with NY, they should start to contend in the east in maybe 4-6 years, he’s too old, he is a win now guy.

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