The Charlotte Hornets appear to have a generational talent on their hands in LaMelo Ball after a sensational rookie year.
The No. 3 overall pick in the 2020 NBA Draft had a historic rookie season that captivated the outside world and brought the spotlight back to Charlotte for the first time in a long time. Despite suffering a wrist injury that knocked him out of the lineup for a significant portion of the season, the 19-year-old took home the NBA’s prestigious Rookie of the Year honors for his stellar efforts.
Despite the promising play from their rookie, it was not enough to elevate the Hornets into the postseason. With a subpar 33-39 record at the conclusion of the regular season, Charlotte qualified for the play-in game, but they were defeated by the Indiana Pacers.
The Hornets’ fantastic season may have ended in disappointment, but the future certainly looks bright with Ball taking the reigns as the franchise’s star player.
The Charlotte Hornets must look to build off a promising season by surrounding LaMelo Ball with more talent
The Hornets could have a considerable amount of cap space to spend this offseason at their disposal to help improve their roster. Although this upcoming free-agent class is not the most star-studded, it does have some household names that this ascending team could look to bring in to help accelerate their jump into contention.
One area that will be worth monitoring from several angles will be the center position. Internally, the team will have two key veterans in Cody Zeller and Bismack Biyambo hit the open market as unrestricted free agents. While both of those veterans proved to be serviceable pieces for the Hornets, the team could reasonably look to bring in an upgrade to bolster their frontcourt rotation. It would make sense to stock up on another big man to pair with Ball as well. The rookie’s pristine playmaking ability was on display throughout the regular season, and he could wreak havoc with the right running-mate catching lob passes and throwing down thunderous slams.
With that being said, here are five free-agent big men that the Hornets should look to pair with rookie phenom LaMelo Ball this offseason.