The Hornets expect their lottery pick to jump right into the rotation, Rick Bonnell of the Charlotte Observer reports. GM Rich Cho told Bonnell that the second unit needs more answers and the No. 11 overall pick should provide one of them. “One thing we feel like we were really lacking last year, where we took a step back, was the bench,” Cho said. “We need a backup point guard, we need another big, we could use another wing to do some more shooting.” A backup point behind Kemba Walker is a high priority and will be filled by the draft or free agency, Bonnell continues. The club holds a $6.27MM option on reserve guard Ramon Sessions but it’s uncertain whether they will exercise it, given that Sessions is coming off a subpar, injury-marred season, Bonnell continues. Louisville’s Donovan Mitchell would be a strong consideration if the Hornets decide to fill that need via the draft, Bonnell adds.
In other news around the Southeast Division:
- Point guard Bryce Cotton will play on the Hawks’ summer-league team, Alex Kennedy of HoopsHype tweets. Cotton played for the Perth Wildcats in the Australian League last season. The 6’1” Cotton played a total of 23 games for the Jazz, Suns and Grizzlies during the previous two seasons.
- Forwards Zach Auguste and Norvel Pelle will play on the Heat’s summer league team, Keith Smith of RealGM tweets. The 6’10” Auguste played in the Turkish league last season after the Lakers cut him during training camp. The former Notre Dame forward also played on the Lakers’ summer league team. The 6’11’ Pelle played on the Heat’s summer league squad last season.
- Gonzaga point guard Nigel Williams-Goss could be a nice fit for the Wizards with their second-round pick, Chase Hughes of CSNMidAtlantic.com opines. The Wizards, who hold the No. 52 overall selection, need another point guard behind John Wall and Williams-Goss could make an instant impact, according to Hughes.