The Hornets are one of 10 teams set to enter the 2018/19 regular season with an open 15-man roster spot. As Rick Bonnell of The Charlotte Observer relays, president of basketball operations Mitch Kupchak said on Monday morning that he hadn’t seen any players waived by another team that were serious candidates to help the club and fill that 15th spot.
While that could change based on the players who were cut later on Monday, it appears Charlotte is happy leaving an opening on its roster for now, saving some money and maximizing flexibility.
Here are a few more Hornets notes, courtesy of Kupchak (by way of Bonnell):
- Kupchak doesn’t expect the Hornets to be involved in any trades over the next several weeks. Of course, once rosters are set for the season, the league-wide trade market isn’t typically too active for a little while, but it’s still worth noting, given that Kupchak made several deals in the offseason.
- Asked about Kemba Walker‘s free agency in 2019, Kupchak reiterated in strong terms that the franchise would like to see its longtime point guard remain in Charlotte beyond this season. “Our hope is that Kemba ends his career in a Hornets uniform, and that’s the end of it,” he said.
- Given how many veterans remain on the Hornets’ roster, Kupchak believes vying for the playoffs is still a more realistic short-term path for the organization than blowing things up. “If you have a lot of veteran players, then you’re looking to make the playoffs,” he said.
- Kupchak views rim protection and rebounding as areas of relative concern for Charlotte, per Bonnell.
- While Kupchak was pleased with how good Miles Bridges looked in the preseason, he wants to keep expectations for the rookie forward in check, cautioning that there will be a “learning curve” for Bridges once the regular season begins.