Charlotte Hornets: Does Bismack Biyombo deserve a chance?

Charlotte Hornets Bismack Biyombo (Photo by Vaughn Ridley/Getty Images)
Charlotte Hornets Bismack Biyombo (Photo by Vaughn Ridley/Getty Images) /

With Cody Zeller out, the Charlotte Hornets will need to showcase their front court depth. Does Bismack Biyombo deserve a shot at some playing time?

Losing starting center Cody Zeller to a fractured right hand is not ideal for the Charlotte Hornets, but the injury could be a good test for some of the other centers on the roster, like Bismack Biyombo.

Biyombo, who is in his second stint with the Hornets, hasn’t gotten very much run this season. Before Monday’s win over Orlando, where Biyombo played some garbage time minutes, he was a DNP-CD for 11 straight games.

He has only played double-digit minutes in a game this season twice, both occasions being in late October.

Does Biz deserve some playing time with Zeller out of action? I say, yes!

Now, you may be wondering why I believe such a seldomly used player like Biyombo is deserving of minutes. Well, this Hornets team is in need of some rim protection. They rank 17th in the league in blocks, which isn’t horrible, but guys like Willy Hernangomez and Frank Kaminsky are simply not going to get it done in that department.

Enter Bismack Biyombo, who is a proven shot-blocking force. In a game earlier this season against Chicago, Biyombo blocked five shots in just 12 minutes of court time.

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Rim protection isn’t just about blocking shots, either. It’s also about changing shots. Biyombo does a great job going straight up without fouling when players come into the paint looking to score. His length is a difference maker on the defensive end of the floor.

Offensively, he’s not very polished, but you can count on him for putbacks and open dunks. His main purpose would be rebounding and rim protection, which are his two best attributes. In a 10-15 minute role, he could have a solid impact.

When you ask fans around the NBA about the league’s worst contracts, you may hear Biyombo’s name. He signed a four-year, $72 million deal with the Orlando Magic in 2016 and hasn’t lived up to expectations since then. The Magic traded him to Charlotte over the summer.

Despite the contract, people forget that Biz is still just 26 years old. He still has room to grow as a player before he enters the prime of his career. During the 2015-16 playoffs with the Toronto Raptors, he had a monster game of seven points, 26 rebounds and four blocks.

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In the end, this guy knows how to play. When given the playing time, he can make a big impact on the defensive end of the court. He may never live up to that contract he got, but he’s a good big for Charlotte to have on the end of the bench.