BLOG: How will things be different for the Charlotte Hornets wit - | WBTV Charlotte

BLOG: How will things be different for the Charlotte Hornets with Lance Stephenson gone?

It has been a week of big news for the Charlotte Hornets.

The first domino fell Monday when Al Jefferson exercised his player option and returned to the team for the final year of his contract.  That wasn't the last big news as the team finished up a trade that sent Lance Stephenson to the Los Angeles Clippers for Spencer Hawes and Matt Barnes.

Then just 2 days later, Gerald Henderson decides to opt in to his contract and return to the team as well.  He will make around $6 million this season.

What does this mean?  The Hornets are closer to looking like the final Bobcats team that made the NBA Playoffs back in the 2013-14 season.

Remember Josh McRoberts?  Spencer Hawes can be almost like him with his ability to shoot the 3 pointer.  Hawes is a career 35% shooter from behind the arc.  The 7 footer's passing skills might not be as good as McRoberts, but Hawes has a skill this team desperately needs.  A 3 point shooter who can pull a big man away from the basket and give Al Jefferson room to do work in the low post.

Let's face it, Lance Stephenson just didn't fit in with the Charlotte Hornets.  His play on the floor was nothing fans or front office folks thought they would get. 

He only averaged 8 points per game and shot a TERRIBLE 17% from 3 point land. 

Would Lance have been better here in year 2?  We will never know now, but my gut feeling says he would have and the Clippers will benefit from it.  It doesn't matter now.  For the Hornets, this is addition by subtraction. 

So, what can the Hornets do now to improve the roster even more?

Sad to say, but not much baring another trade. 

With Al and Gerald opting back in and Kemba Walker starting to collect on his new deal ($12 million per season) that he signed last year, there won't be much money to sign free agents.

Might be room to sign one mid level player which brings us to next Thursday's NBA Draft.  The pick will be HUGE for this franchise.  Could be the final chance to improve the roster.  

They better make it count.

Nate

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