The Charlotte Bobcats are knee-deep in an 11-game winning streak, and the team is considering changes. This weekend news broke that the Bobcats are interested in dealing Gerald Henderson. Moving Henderson would help clear the Bobcats crowded backcourt and could also bring back some frontcourt help. The Bobcats are currently last in frontcourt scoring.
It’s a little difficult right now to get a grasp for what teams are going to be in the market for shooting guards. Henderson’s athletic and defensive ability on a salary of a little over $3 million will be intriguing for a lot of teams. If the Bobcats want to take on higher salary, then they can always tag Gana Diop’s $7.3 M expiring with him.
For the purpose of this, I’ve looked at teams who are among the worst in backcourt scoring, in which the Bobcats lead the league at 51.5ppg:
Gerald Henderson, Ramon Sessions, Gana Diop and Bismack Biyombo to the Utah Jazz for Al Jefferson, Alec Burks and Randy Foye. I tried to save the longshot deals for last, but I couldn’t resist. ESPN’s Marc Stein reported that the Jazz could deal either Jefferson or Paul Millsap before the trade deadline, as both will hit free agency next summer. The Jazz have young bigs in Enes Kanter and Derrick Favors who they think will fill their shoes going forward. Jefferson and Millsap are the Jazz’s two top players, so it’s likely they would ask for a solid return. The Jazz are reportedly seeking a “front-line point guard” in a deal for one of the two. Sessions seems to fit that bill, and they would get a productive guard in Henderson and a young big in Biyombo to go along with it. For the Bobcats, you get an 18-20ppg scorer who you can start at center and re-sign the following season. Getting Alec Burks would also be interesting, as he’s been disappointing with the Jazz.
Gerald Henderson to the Indiana Pacers for Tyler Hansbrough. The Pacers used to value Hansbrough highly, but this season his minutes have been cut from 22mpg to 16mpg. Part of that has been the play of David West. Hansbrough’s points per 36 have declined for four seasons and he’s on track to become a restricted free agent. The Pacers are tied for last in backcourt scoring, and Henderson could be a cheap option to help boost that. For the Bobcats, Hansbrough would bring energy, toughness and rebounding to the Bobcats struggling frontcourt. He’s the type of player whose effort would quickly fit in with Mike Dunlap’s style. If Hansbrough adapts well, he could be a player the Bobcats bring back. It’d be a lot more likely than bringing Henderson back to a crowded backcourt.
Gerald Henderson and Reggie Williams to the Orlando Magic for Glen Davis. Davis isn’t the most efficient scorer, but is averaging about 16ppg for the Magic as a starter. If Orlando is looking for ways to shed salary, a deal like this would get them out of the last two years of Davis’ contract, while allowing more space to develop their younger players. For the Bobcats, Davis would improve their scoring whether off the bench or as a starter.
Gerald Henderson and Bismack Biyombo to the Phoenix Suns for Marcin Gortat. I like this deal a lot for the Bobcats, though it’s very risky. With Steve Nash gone, Gortat’s numbers and use have slipped in Phoenix. There’s been a lot of rumblings that Gortat could be dealt at the deadline because of it. Gortat I feel would be a lot more suited for Charlotte than Phoenix. The Bobcats could use his low post play offensively, as well as his defense. He could immediately become the teams starting center. Gortat is only under contract through next season, for a little over $7M. Biyombo still has a lot of upside, but I think a player like Gortat who’s shown to be effective on both sides of the ball, would fit a lot better.
It will be interesting to see how the market shapes up for Henderson, and while these particular deals might not happen, I do think that the teams will be interested, as all lack backcourt production.