Tue. Jun 25th, 2024

The Charlotte Hornets may be able to make a trade on draft day

By meerna Jun12,2024

The 2024 NBA Draft is shaping up to be an exciting one, if for no other reason than the lack of consensus on prospect rankings. Chase mentioned in his big announcement that there is little noticeable difference between his top 18 prospects. Depending on your personal view of this class, this potentially makes this one of the rare NBA drafts where a trade could actually be beneficial. The Charlotte Hornets are in a great position to do just that.

It is said that there are several teams that are interested in promotion. The Bulls, Grizzlies, Thunder and Jazz are reportedly considering trading players for Donovan Clingan. These four teams represent picks 9 through 12 in the draft. In the same article, ESPN notes that the Bulls (with the 11th pick) are also considering trading for Matas Buzelis, and it definitely has nothing to do with their Lithuanian general manager wanting recruit a Lithuanian candidate.

Typically, trading down is a bad idea. Ignacio Rissotto studied previous draft night trades and found that outside of the Jayson Tatum and Markelle Fultz trade, the team trading up always delivered the best player in the deal. If any project was ever going to be an exception to the rule, it was this one.

Although they have one of the lowest picks on the aforementioned list of teams trying to advance, the Chicago Bulls or Utah Jazz could be the best trade partner for the Hornets. The Hornets could move back five spots and still potentially sign a player like Devin Carter. Typically, this type of trade requires the team to move up to also pick in the first round, and the Bulls are an ideal target for this type of trade. The other two teams rumored to be interested in a swap, the Grizzlies and Thunder, are expected to be permanent playoff teams. The Thunder have a treasure trove of draft picks, but none of them stand out as particularly attractive or transferable. The Grizzlies have no other valuable picks. The Jazz are trying to climb and probably don’t like the idea of ​​investing in future assets.

So that leaves us first with the Bulls, who are one of the few remaining teams that can definitely be pointed to as a target worth taking advantage of. They seem content to land in purgatory and have a history of drafting in the first round for quick resolutions. This is somewhat working against the Hornets, as they are currently on the hook to send the Spurs a first-round pick in a 2021 trade for DeMar DeRozan. The earliest the Hornets can get a pick from the Bulls is two years after that pick goes to the Spurs. But before that happens, the Bulls will likely have a new front office, and it won’t be a good thing.

If the Hornets don’t find this palatable, their other good choice would be the Jazz. The Jazz are currently 10th and in the middle of their own rebuild, but have a surplus of picks from the Donovan Mitchell and Rudy Gobert trades. The Timberwolves seem to have established themselves as at least a good team going forward. However, the Jazz have unprotected picks from the Cavaliers in 2025 and 2027. The Hornets could bank on the Cavs imploding and add to their stack of 2027 picks, or simply add one for next season.

Opting out of the NBA draft is a risky endeavor, and the Hornets should only consider it if management is especially ahead of them. They must either miss out on their most important goals or feel very confident that one of these most important goals will survive until they are elected.

By meerna

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