Charlotte Hornets: 15 greatest draft picks in franchise history

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BROOKLYN, NY – JUNE 22: A shot of the Charlotte Hornets cap during the 2017 NBA Draft on June 22, 2017 at Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 2017 NBAE (Photo by Ashlee Espinal/NBAE via Getty Images)

The Charlotte Hornets have made a number of draft picks, good and bad, over the years. Here are the top-15 first-round picks to date.

After finishing the 2017-18 campaign with a 36-46 record and missing out on the playoffs for the second consecutive year, the Charlotte Hornets are back in the NBA Draft Lottery for the 11th time in the last 14 seasons and for the 19th time in franchise history. Unfortunately, that many selections in the lottery haven’t resulted in superstar level players. Despite their failures in the draft, they have had a few hits.

The Hornets have made a total of 52 selections in the NBA Draft since 1988. Last year, they picked Malik Monk 11th overall in the first round of the 2017 NBA Draft. He was one of the top college prospects coming out of the University of Kentucky, but saw limited playing time in his first year under Steve Clifford. With that being said, he did have a strong finish to the season.

No. Kobe Bryant will not be included on this list. Even though Charlotte took him in 13th overall pick in 1996, the Hall of Famer never played a single minute with the Hornets and was traded to the Los Angeles Lakers after refusing to play for any other team but the historic Los Angeles franchise.

Also, Adam Morrison is easily the team’s worst draft pick ever. The then-Bobcats drafted him third overall in 2006. He was an immediate bust playing in only 122 games for the team and averaging a mere 9.1 points per game.

Honorable Mentions: Jamaal Magloire, Center, University of Kentucky (2000, No. 19), Tony Delk, Point Guard, University of Kentucky, (1996, No. 16), Ricky Davis, Shooting Guard, University of Iowa (1998, No. 21), Malik Rose, Power Forward, Drexel University (1996, No. 44) and Lee Nailon, Small Forward, TCU (1999, No. 43). The main reason these players were left off the list was that most of their individual success came after leaving Charlotte.

15
Scott Burrell
SF UCONN Huskies, 1993

Charlotte picked Scott Burrell 20th overall in the first round of the 1993 NBA Draft. That draft class included seven all-stars in Chris Webber, Anfernee Hardaway, Jamal Mashburn, Vin Baker, Allan Houston, Sam Cassell and Nick Van Exel. Scott would end up playing five total seasons with the Hornets.

In his five years with Charlotte, Burrell averaged 8.5 points, 4.0 rebounds and 1.8 assists per game in 168 games (100 starts) with the Queen City team. His best season was his third year in the league (1995-96) when he put up a career-high 13.2 points to go along with 4.9 rebounds per game.

Scott had two separate stints with the Hornets. The first three and a half seasons in the NBA came with Charlotte before being traded to the Chicago Bulls where he actually won an NBA Championship alongside Michael Jordan in 1997-98. He then went on to play for the New Jersey Nets for a couple of years before rejoining Charlotte for one last season in 2000-01.

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