Under The Radar Free Agent Targets For The Charlotte Hornets


Charlotte Hornets need help, but where can they turn?

Charlotte is a great city, but it is not a hotbed of free agent activity. Most likely, all the big time free agents will not even consider making the Queen City their home this summer. Guys like LaMarcus Aldridge, Marc Gasol, and Goran Dragic will find a basketball home elsewhere. However, there are still quality players who will be flying under the radar of the glamour markets this July.

Jeremy Lin

He will be had for a bargain in the offseason, and I still believe he can be that guy he was in New York and Houston (first season). No, I am not saying Linsanity 2.o is on the horizon, but I am saying Lin is still a talented guard who can provide a spark off the bench for the offense, something that Charlotte really needs – especially if Mo Williams is not resigned.

Gerald Green

The high flying swingman has been a good fit in Charlotte since his emergence as a solid two way player, and this could be the chance for the Hornets to grab him. He could probably be bought for a 2-3 year deal worth around $12-18 million. That kind of money is manageable, especially if Gerald Henderson opts out of his $6 million player option.

Danny Green

Danny Green is going to cost some money this offseason, and he is very deserving of it. I wouldn’t be surprised if he stayed in San Antonio on a cheaper deal and give coach Poppovich a home town discount, but if he does choose to chase the money, Charlotte would be wise to give it to him.

Clearing way for a big salary like Green’s would involve probably dumping Lance Stephenson’s contract this offseason, but that should be somewhat doable. Green could command something along the lines of 4 year, $35 million in free agency, and I would be an advocate of giving him that much. He can really shake up a Charlotte offense that has zero shooting in it.

Marco Bellinelli

Another Spurs shooting guard, Bellinelli has been a three point assassin for years now. He doesn’t get that much playing time in San Antonio because he shares the two guard spot with Danny Green and Manu Ginobli. But he could come in and be an instant 7th man for the Hornets, and he would provide solid shooting for a low price.

Amir Johnson

Johnson has been productive in his career with the Raptors, going from bench to starter to bench and back again. He still has shown a consistent ability to rebound and stretch the floor with a decent mid range shot.

He would provide comfort behind Cody Zeller at the four, along with Noah Vonleh and Marvin Williams. And he could probably be bought for about 2 years, $10 million.

Marcus Thornton

There was a time where Thornton looked as if he was destined to be a deadly scorer in the league. After emerging as a solid bench player his rookie and sophomore season with the New Orleans Hornets, Thornton shot into a main scorer role with Sacramento, where he scored over 21 points a game in 2010-2011.

However, his scoring numbers have declined all the way down to under nine points this most recent season. He still has a real knack for scoring, though, and the Hornets would be a good place to try and pull that out of him – he is just 27 years old.

A short contract, maybe 2 years for $7 million, would do the trick as he looks to get his career back on track.

Landry Fields

Landry Fields is another guy whose career has fallen apart. After Toronto gave him a three year, $20 million restricted free agent offer to try and force New York to match so that they couldn’t afford Steve Nash (who Toronto coveted), his role in Toronto (who didn’t even think he would be on their roster) diminished his career. So, on a team that didn’t really want or need him, Fields saw little playing time and was cursed with injuries.

But he deserves a second chance, and Charlotte could be the place for that, on a 2 year, around $4 million deal.

Pero Antic

A center who can shoot threes? Thats still not very common in the NBA. Antic would give the Hornets a good backup who stretches the floor for the bench to open up and get some points. His shot isn’t great, but it is a weapon that if used correctly, could lead to some good plays off the bench. If Atlanta lets him walk, look for him to seek a 3 year deal worth around $12-14 million.