Archive for the ‘ Charlotte Hornets Blog ’ Category

Noel Gillespie has been named head coach of the Greensboro Swarm, the Charlotte Hornets’ new NBA Development League affiliate. Gillespie brings more than 14 years of NBA experience to Greensboro, including the last six as a full-time assistant coach.

“We are very excited to have Noel Gillespie as the head coach of our new D-League team,” said Hornets General Manager Rich Cho. “His impressive background in player development and his significant experience make him an ideal fit for this role. We are confident that he will be a great leader for the Swarm and will work well with Coach Clifford and the Hornets coaching staff in recognizing and growing potential talent within our system.”

Gillespie joins the Swarm from the Denver Nuggets, where he has spent the last three seasons as an assistant coach. Prior to his time in Denver, he spent 10 seasons with the Phoenix Suns. Gillespie started with the Suns in 2003-04, spending one season as assistant video coordinator and four seasons as video coordinator before becoming the team’s advance scout in 2008-09. He was promoted to assistant coach and advance scout in 2009-10, spending one season in the role before being named a full-time assistant coach starting with the 2010-11 season. In 2007, while with the Suns, he was an assistant coach for the Western Conference All-Star Team and the sophomore team at the Rookie Challenge during All-Star Weekend in Las Vegas.

Gillespie is a native of Milwaukee, Wisconsin, and a graduate of the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater. He got his start in the NBA as a video assistant with the Indiana Pacers in 2001-02 and served as a graduate assistant coach at Florida State University in 2002-03 before joining the Suns.

“I’m honored and excited to become a part of this organization and coach in Greensboro, a city that shares my passion for the sport of basketball,” said Gillespie. “To coach players and create an environment that allows them to reach their full potential is a great opportunity that I am very enthusiastic about.”

Hornets sign center Mike Tobey

Hornets sign center Mike Tobey

The Hornets have signed center Mike Tobey. Until we hear otherwise, we will assume this is a non-guaranteed contract.

“We really liked what we saw in Mike during mini-camp and he continued to impress throughout Summer League,” Hornets General Manager Rich Cho said. “He is a talented young big man with a lot of potential and we look forward to seeing what he can do moving forward.”

Tobey, a four-year player at Virginia, saw action in 138 games during his career, posting averages of 6.8 points and 4.0 rebounds in 16.3 minutes per game. His .622 two-point field goal percentage ranked third in the ACC during the 2015-16 season. The 7-0 center tallied 11 outings of double-digit scoring and 15 games of five-or-more rebounds, including one double-double in his final collegiate campaign. He was named ACC Sixth Man of the Year following the 2014-15 season.

The Monroe, N.Y. native, went undrafted in the 2016 NBA Draft and played in all five games for the Hornets at the Southwest Airlines Orlando Pro Summer League. He averaged 10.0 points, 6.8 rebounds, 1.6 blocks and 1.0 steals in 20.8 minutes per game, tallying three games of ten-or-more points including one double-double.

Hornets sign Christian Wood

Hornets sign Christian Wood

The Hornets have signed forward Christian Wood, who has played very well for the Sixers in 2016 Summer League.

Wood appeared in 17 games for the Philadelphia 76ers in 2015-16, posting averages of 3.6 points and 2.2 rebounds in 8.5 minutes per game as a rookie. The 6-11 forward also played in 32 games with the Delaware 87ers in the NBA D-League, where he averaged 17.3 points, 9.4 rebounds and 1.1 blocks in 28.8 minutes per game while shooting .529 from the field and .707 from the free-throw line. The UNLV product logged 25 games of double-digit scoring, including 12 games with 20-or-more points and two games with 40-or-more points. The 20-year-old rookie netted a D-League career-high 45 points on Feb. 28 against the Canton Charge.

The Long Beach, Calif., native went undrafted in the 2015 NBA Draft following a two-year collegiate career at UNLV. In 63 total games, he averaged 10.4 points, 6.8 rebounds and 1.9 blocks in 23.3 minutes per game. During the 2014-15 season, Wood averaged 15.7 points, 10.0 rebounds and 2.7 blocks, ranking second in the Mountain West Conference in both rebounds (329) and blocks (90).

Hornets to add Christian Wood

While there are still some good free agents left, most starter-worthy players have already signed deals. Still available is a lot of bench depth. Here’s the Charlotte Observer reporting on the Hornets, who will add forward Christian Wood. Through three games in Vegas Summer League playing for the Sixers, Wood is averaging 13.0 points and 5.3 rebounds with 48.1% FG — impressive numbers in just 18.7 minutes per game. And through six games for the Sixers in total 2016 summer league action, Wood is averaging 15.8 points and 5.7 rebounds in just 17.7 minutes per outing.:

Hornets to add Christian Wood

The Charlotte Hornets will sign former Philadelphia 76ers power forward Christian Wood, an informed source confirmed late Wednesday.

Wood, 6-10, averaged 3.6 points and 2.2 rebounds in his rookie season with the 76ers. He played part of the season with the Sixers’ Development League franchise in Delaware.

Hornets re-sign Marvin Williams

Hornets re-sign Marvin Williams

Charlotte Hornets General Manager Rich Cho announced today that the team has re-signed forward Marvin Williams to a multi-year deal.

“Marvin Williams embodies the exact type of player we look for when building the Hornets roster,” said Cho. “He can defend multiple positions, brings versatility and improved shooting on the offensive end and is a veteran presence that our younger players look up to. We are excited to keep Marvin in Charlotte and build off last year’s success with him as a part of our team.”

Williams appeared and started in 81 games with the Hornets in 2015-16, averaging 11.7 points, 6.4 rebounds, 1.4 assists and 1.0 block in 28.9 minutes per game. In his 11th NBA season, he posted career highs in rebounds per game (6.4), three-point field goal percentage (.402), total three-point field goals (152), three-point field goals per game (1.9), total blocks (77), blocks per game (1.0) and double-doubles (10). His 10 double-doubles were more than his total from the previous four seasons combined (eight).

Hornets sign Brian Roberts

Hornets sign Brian Roberts

Charlotte Hornets General Manager Rich Cho announced today that the team has signed free-agent guard Brian Roberts.

A four-year NBA veteran, Roberts played with Charlotte in each of the last two seasons (2014-15 and 2015-16) before a three-team trade on Feb. 16, 2016, sent him to the Miami Heat, which later traded him to the Portland Trail Blazers. Roberts, who originally signed with the Hornets as a free agent on July 23, 2014, played in 102 total games (10 starts) for Charlotte with averages of 6.1 points, 2.0 assists and 1.4 rebounds in 16.3 minutes per game.

In 51 total games played between Charlotte and Portland in 2015-16, Roberts averaged 4.0 points, 1.1 assists and 0.8 rebounds in 9.2 minutes per game.

A Toledo, Ohio, native who played collegiately at the University of Dayton, Roberts went undrafted in the 2008 NBA Draft and played internationally for four seasons before signing with New Orleans in 2012-13. Over his four NBA seasons, he has appeared in 273 games (57 starts), averaging 7.0 points, 2.5 assists and 1.4 rebounds in 17.5 minutes per game with New Orleans, Charlotte and Portland. For his career, Roberts has shot .915 from the free-throw line (303-331), including an NBA-best .940 (125-133) in 2013-14.

Hornets re-sign Nicolas Batum

Nic Batum has versatile basketball skills

Hornets re-sign Nicolas Batum

Charlotte Hornets General Manager Rich Cho announced today that the team has re-signed guard/forward Nicolas Batum to a multi-year deal. The deal is reportedly a $120 million dollar contract, over five years.

“Ensuring that Nic remained in Charlotte was a top priority for us this offseason and we are thrilled that he has re-signed with us,” Cho said. “Nic brings versatility, skill and playmaking to our roster that complements all of our players and played a significant role in our playoff berth in 2015-16. We are excited to continue to build on what we’ve accomplished with Nic as a Hornet.”

Batum appeared and started in 70 games with the Hornets in 2015-16, averaging 14.9 points, 6.1 rebounds and 5.8 assists in 35.0 minutes per game. In his eighth NBA season, he posted career highs in points per game, assists per game and field goals made per game and was one of only six qualified players in the NBA to average at least 14 points, six rebounds and five assists during the season, along with Kevin Durant, Draymond Green, James Harden, LeBron James and Russell Westbrook. Batum earned his first Eastern Conference Player of the Week award last season, earning the accolade for games played from Nov. 9-15.

The guard/forward from Lisieux, France, totaled 1,046 points, 428 rebounds and 403 assists during the 2015-16 NBA season, becoming only the fourth player in Charlotte NBA history to tally 1,000 points, 400 rebounds and 400 assists in a single season (Baron Davis – 2000-01, Jamal Mashburn – 2000-01 and Anthony Mason – 1996-97). In addition, he became the first Charlotte player since Davis in 2000-01 to post multiple triple-doubles in a single season, doing so on Dec. 9 vs. Miami and March 29 vs. Philadelphia.

Charlotte originally acquired Batum from the Portland Trail Blazers in exchange for guard Gerald Henderson and forward Noah Vonleh on June 24, 2015. The 25th overall pick in the 2008 NBA Draft, Batum has appeared in 551 games (498 starts), averaging 11.7 points, 5.2 rebounds and 3.4 assists over eight NBA seasons. He has seen action in 39 total playoff games (29 starts) with averages of 10.4 points, 4.5 rebounds and 2.6 assists, including five playoff games with Charlotte in 2015-16.

Batum has been a member of the French National Team since 2009, representing his country in the 2012 Olympics, 2010 FIBA World Championship, 2014 FIBA World Cup and 2009, 2011, 2013 and 2015 FIBA European Championships. He led France to a gold medal in the 2013 European Championship, a silver medal in the 2011 European Championship and bronze medals in the 2014 FIBA World Cup and 2015 European Championship. He is currently competing with the national team in the Olympic Qualifying Tournament.

Hornets sign Ramon Sessions

Ramon Sessions will be backup to Kemba Walker

Hornets sign Ramon Sessions

Charlotte Hornets General Manager Rich Cho announced today that the team has signed guard Ramon Sessions. The deal is reportedly a two-year, $12.5 million dollar contract.

A native of Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, Sessions returns to Charlotte, where he previously played from 2012-14. In addition to Charlotte, the nine-year NBA veteran has played for Milwaukee, Minnesota, Cleveland, the Los Angeles Lakers, Sacramento and Washington. He has appeared in 613 total games (142 starts) with career averages of 10.9 points, 4.2 assists and 2.8 rebounds.

The University of Nevada-Reno product spent the 2015-16 season with the Wizards, where he averaged 9.9 points, 2.9 assists and 2.5 rebounds in 20.3 minutes and was the only player to appear in every games. Sessions, who led the team in assists seven times and in scoring on four occasions, tallied three double-doubles on the season. He came off the bench in 77 of his 82 games and averaged 9.4 points in those contests, which ranked sixth in the Eastern Conference among qualified reserve players.

During his previous tenure in Charlotte, Sessions played in 116 total games (seven starts), with averages of 12.5 points, 3.8 assists and 2.5 rebounds in 25.5 minutes per game. In 2012-13, he averaged a career-high 14.4 points per game. Sessions, who came off the bench in each of his 61 appearances that season, scored in double figures in 49 of 61 games played before missing the season’s final 21 contests due to a left knee injury.

The 57th overall pick in the 2007 NBA Draft, Sessions has seen action in 22 career playoff games with averages of 8.7 points, 3.0 assists and 2.7 rebounds in 27.2 minutes.

Hornets sign Roy Hibbert

Roy Hibbert is tall

Hornets sign Roy Hibbert

Charlotte Hornets General Manager Rich Cho announced today that the team has signed center Roy Hibbert. The deal is reportedly for one year, $5 million.

Hibbert has appeared in 614 career games (573 starts) for the Indiana Pacers and Los Angeles Lakers, owning career averages of 10.4 points, 6.5 rebounds, 1.8 blocks and 1.4 assists in 25.6 minutes per game. He was named to the Eastern Conference All-Star Team in both 2012 and 2014, adding NBA All-Defensive Second Team honors in 2014. He finished among the NBA’s top five in both total blocks and blocks per game in three straight seasons from 2011-14 and enters his ninth NBA campaign ranked sixth among active players and 30th all-time in blocks per game.

The Georgetown product was originally chosen by the Toronto Raptors with the 17th overall pick in the 2008 NBA Draft, before having his rights traded to Indiana, where he spent the first seven of his eight NBA seasons. A native of Queens, New York, Hibbert has appeared and started in 54 playoff games, averaging 12.6 points, 8.3 rebounds and 2.0 blocks in 31.6 minutes per contest, including back-to-back trips to the Eastern Conference Finals with the Pacers in 2012-13 and 2013-14.
Hibbert played in 81 games (all starts) with the Los Angeles Lakers during the 2015-16 season, his first with the club, posting averages of 5.9 points, 4.9 rebounds and 1.8 blocks in 25.6 minutes per game.

Kings trade Marco Belinelli to Hornets for Malachi Richardson

The Charlotte Hornets have acquired guard/forward Marco Belinelli from the Sacramento Kings in exchange for the draft rights to guard Malachi Richardson, who was selected with the 22nd overall pick in the 2016 NBA Draft.

“We are excited to be adding a high-caliber player in Marco Belinelli to our roster,” said Hornets General Manager Rich Cho. “Marco is a solid outside shooter and has proven he can score and create for others in a variety of ways over the course of his nine-year NBA career. He brings veteran leadership to our locker room and we think he’ll mesh with our core group well.”

The 18th overall pick in the 2007 NBA Draft, Belinelli is entering his 10th NBA season. He has played in 570 career games (216 starts) for Golden State, Toronto, New Orleans, Chicago, San Antonio and Sacramento, winning an NBA Championship with the Spurs in 2014. Belinelli owns career averages of 9.5 points, 2.0 rebounds and 1.6 assists in 23.0 minutes per game, while shooting .424 from the field (1940-4576), .379 from beyond the three-point line (751-1979) and .821 from the free throw line (798-972). In 2014, Belinelli won the Foot Locker Three-Point Contest at All-Star weekend in New Orleans. He began his career in the Italian SerieA League, playing there for five seasons from 2002-07.

The San Giovanni in Persiceto, Italy native played in 68 games (seven starts) for Sacramento in 2015-16, averaging 10.2 points, 1.7 rebounds and 1.9 assists in 24.6 minutes per game. Belinelli had 31 double-figure scoring outings in 2015-16, including four 20-plus point games, and hit multiple three-point field goals in 29 contests.

Belinelli has been a member of the Italian National Team since 2006, competing in the FIBA World Championship in 2006 and in the FIBA European Championship in 2007, 2009, 2011, 2013 and 2015. He is currently representing his country in the Olympic Qualifying Tournament.

Brian Roberts will join Hornets

Brian Roberts will join Hornets

Looking to fine-tune their upcoming roster, the Charlotte Hornets came to terms with Brian Roberts Wednesday to be the team’s third point guard.

A source familiar with the deal said Roberts will be paid the veteran minimum salary.

The Hornets start Kemba Walker at the point and have agreed to a two-year, $12.3 milllion deal with Ramon Sessions to be Walker’s backup.

– Charlotte Observer

Hornets extend qualifying offer to Troy Daniels

The Charlotte Hornets have extended a qualifying offer to guard Troy Daniels.

By extending a qualifying offer to Daniels prior to the June 30 deadline, Charlotte owns the right to match any offer sheet he may sign with another team. Daniels will become a restricted free agent on July 1.

Daniels averaged 5.6 points and 1.3 rebounds in 11.1 minutes per game during his third NBA season, appearing in 43 games. The 24-year-old guard connected on 59 three pointers, shooting .484 percent from downtown, both marking career highs. Daniels ranked first among players that played less than 500 minutes during the 2015-16 season in three-point field goals. On Jan. 25, 2016, the Roanoke, Va. native made a franchise-record-tying eight three-point field goals, including the game-winning shot with nine seconds remaining in double-overtime against the Sacramento Kings.

The 6-4 Virginia Commonwealth product originally went undrafted in the 2013 NBA Draft. Daniels was acquired by the Hornets in a trade with the Minnesota Timberwolves on Feb. 10, 2015, along with Mo Williams in exchange for Gary Neal and a 2019 second-round draft pick.

Frank Kaminsky having chest surgery

frank kaminsky

Hornets forward Frank Kaminsky will not play 2016 summer league. On Wednesday, June 29, Kaminsky will undergo a minor procedure to repair a small pocket of air in his chest wall. The recovery time for the procedure is approximately six weeks.

Kaminsky averaged 7.5 points, 4.1 rebounds and 1.2 assists in 21.1 minutes per game during his rookie campaign, appearing in 81 games (three starts). He became the sixth rookie in Charlotte NBA history to play at least 81 games in a single season. Kaminsky was one of only two rookies to total more than 600 points, 300 rebounds and 50 three-point field goals during the 2015-16 campaign. The Lisle, Ill., native connected on 68 three-point field goals in his inaugural season, ranking fifth among qualified NBA rookies.

The core of the Hornets backcourt this past season was Kemba Walker and Nicolas Batum. Jeremy Lin, however, played fairly big minutes (26.3 mins/game) but was paid like a guy who sits close to the end of the bench. It isn’t a surprise that he’s seeking a new contract. Here’s reporting:

Jeremy Lin reportedly declines contract option

Facing a Wednesday deadline, Charlotte Hornets guard Jeremy Lin declined to opt in on a $2.2 million player option for next season, making him an unrestricted free agent as of July 1, league sources say.

Lin, who turns 28 in August, averaged 11.7 points, 3.2 rebounds and 3 assists over 26.3 minutes per game in his only season with the Hornets. He signed a two-year, $4.3 million contract with Charlotte last July, but the contract contained an early termination option that Lin triggered to explore free agency.

Kemba Walker undergoes knee surgery

Kemba Walker undergoes knee surgery

Charlotte Hornets guard Kemba Walker underwent successful surgery today to repair a torn meniscus in his left knee. The procedure was completed by Hornets Team Physician Dr. Marcus Cook at Novant Orthopedic Hospital in Charlotte. Walker is expected to resume basketball activities in early July.

The 6-1 Walker finished second in NBA Most Improved Player balloting in 2015-16, after averaging a career-high 20.9 points per game in 81 games (all starts) and shooting career highs of .427 from the field and .371 from beyond the three-point line. The Connecticut product also added 5.2 assists, 4.4 rebounds and 1.6 steals per game. Walker was one of only five players in the NBA to total at least 1,600 points, 400 assists, 300 rebounds, 100 steals and 100 three-pointers on the season. He had a career-high 13 games with 30 points or more and led the NBA in scoring in late and close situations (the last two minutes of the fourth quarter when the game is within four points). Walker led the Hornets to the fifth-best season in Charlotte NBA history (48-34, .585) and the best record in the Eastern Conference from Feb. 1 through the end of the season (25-9, .735).

Walker has spent all five seasons of his career in Charlotte, appearing in 364 games (319 starts) with averages of 17.3 points, 5.3 assists, 3.8 rebounds and 1.4 steals per game. Walker finished the 2015-16 campaign ranked second in Charlotte NBA history in career three-point field goals (552), third in assists (1,946) and fourth in scoring (6.307).

Some key Hornets will be free agents

This summer will be huge for the entire league due to the rising salary cap, but it’ll be specially crucial for the Hornets, who need to make big offer decisions to a number of their most essential players not named Kemba Walker. Here’s the Charlotte Observer reporting:

Small forward Nic Batum, the Charlotte Hornets’ most attractive free-agent-to-be, said Monday he has “unfinished business” in the Queen City.

Translation: He’s predisposed to re-signing with the Hornets if the salary numbers are competitive…

Batum had a career year with the Hornets after the trade that acquired him from the Portland Trail Blazers in June. Coach Steve Clifford said Monday there’s no question Batum is the top priority among five unrestricted free agents who were in the Hornets rotation this season.

The other four are Al Jefferson, Jeremy Lin (assuming he exercises his opt-out), Marvin Williams and Courtney Lee.

By editor Jeff Lenchiner

(Note: I am typing this entire blog entry on my cellphone while in a cab around 11:15pm Friday night and not editing this, so I insist that you forgive and ignore any typos)

Friday night in Charlotte the Miami Heat beat the Hornets 97-90 to tie their first round NBA playoff series at three games apiece.

A minor side story was “Purple Shirt Guy” — an unnamed fan (if he’s famous, we didn’t recognize him) with a great courtside seat, quickly nicknamed Purple Shirt Guy because, why not.

He was standing up and loudly taunting veteran Heat star Dwyane Wade, who responded with some huge clutch baskets.

My opinion is that while fans close to the court have a right to stand up and be enthusiastic, I’m not sure that SUSTAINED yelling by a fan as he is out of his seat at a player should be allowed, especially if the fan is courtside and therefore very close to the players.

I’m not sure exactly where the league should draw the line. Naturally they should err in favor of passionate fans. But in this sort of situation in the future, perhaps a security guard needs to encourage him/her to get back into their seat and stay there.

Tough call. But Purple Shirt Guy in Charlotte did, in my opinion, cross the line slightly. Players have to feel comfortable and protected.

The good news is, D-Wade sure appeared to feel fine as he suddenly drained key three-pointers and rose up like the star he’s been for many years.

Spencer Hawes knee injury: MCL sprain

Spencer Hawes knee injury: MCL sprain

The Charlotte Hornets announced today that center Spencer Hawes underwent a magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) which revealed a sprain of the medial collateral ligament (MCL) in his right knee. Hawes is listed as out for Game 6 tomorrow night in Charlotte and will be re-evaluated in a week. He suffered the injury during the Hornets win in Game 5 last night in Miami. Hawes has appeared in five playoff games for Charlotte with averages of 3.6 points (.462 FG%) and 3.2 rebounds in 10.6 minutes per game.

The Hornets currently lead the Heat 3-2 in their first round NBA playoff series.

Nic Batum gets triple-double vs Sixers

The Philadelphia 76ers are technically an NBA team, so no matter what you think of their roster, getting a triple-double against them is still a solid achievement. Here’s the Charlotte Observer reporting:

Nic Batum gets triple-double vs Sixers

Charlotte Hornets coach Steve Clifford hasn’t always thought his team scored in the lane enough this season.

Tuesday they sure did, pummeling the shorthanded Philadelphia 76ers in the paint for a 100-85 victory at Wells Fargo Center.

This victory get the Hornets ever closer to their third playoff berth since the NBA returned to Charlotte in 2004.

Small forward Nic Batum (19 points, 12 rebounds and 12 assists) completed his second triple-double as a Hornet and center Cody Zeller had a double-double of 18 points and 11 rebounds.

Read more here:

Hornets sign Jorge Gutierrez for rest of season

The Charlotte Hornets have signed guard Jorge Gutierrez for the rest of the 2015-16 NBA season.

The 6-3 Gutierrez signed consecutive 10-day contracts with Charlotte on Feb. 20 and Mar. 1. He has appeared in three games with the Hornets, averaging 3.0 points, 1.0 assists and 0.3 steals in 4.5 minutes per game.

Gutierrez appeared in 22 games (20 starts) for the Canton Charge in the NBA Development League this season, averaging 11.3 points, 5.7 assists, 4.2 rebounds and 2.2 steals in 27.8 minutes per game. Gutierrez scored in double figures in 13 games and handed out 10-or-more assists twice. He recorded his first D-League triple-double with 18 points, 10 rebounds and 10 assists on Jan. 9 against the Los Angeles D-Fenders at the NBA D-League Showcase.

After a four-year career at the University of California, Gutierrez initially joined the Charge in 2012-13. Since then, he has played in 122 games (103 starts) for the team, with career averages of 12.0 points, 5.6 assists, 4.9 rebounds and 1.7 steals in 30.9 minutes per game. In 2013-14, while playing for current Hornets assistant coach Steve Hetzel, he earned First Team All-Defensive and Second Team All-D-League honors after averaging career highs of 13.9 points, 6.9 assists, 5.7 rebounds and 32.7 minutes played.

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