Charlotte Hornets: What each young player needs to work on this summer

Charlotte Hornets Miles Bridges (Photo by Kent Smith/NBAE via Getty Images)
Charlotte Hornets Miles Bridges (Photo by Kent Smith/NBAE via Getty Images) /
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Charlotte Hornets
Charlotte Hornets Willy Hernangomez (Photo by Cameron Browne/NBAE via Getty Images) /

Willy Hernangomez: Defense, Shooting

The biggest knock on Willy Hernangomez’s game has always been his defense. He’s a below-average defender, but is really good at a lot of things, and even showed at times that he can step out and hit a three-pointer every now and then.

Hernangomez is going to have a chance at some real good playing time next season. Cody Zeller is the only center ahead of him on the depth chart, and with Charlotte in rebuild mode, it wouldn’t surprise me to see them prioritize getting him more minutes.

Since entering the league, Hernangomez has been one of those guys that can check into a game and just quickly have a double-double. I mean, he racks up the stats, but what’s kept him off the floor is his defense. I did see improvements from him on that end of the floor this past season, but it’s still a legit concern.

I think his timing on blocked shots has to be better, as well as being able to just stay in front when switched on the perimeter. That’s not an easy ask, but it’s something critical in today’s NBA; teams are also looking for switches and mismatches on the perimeter.

The second area of improvement for him should be his perimeter shooting. He made a career-best 15 three’s last season, and attempted a career-best 39 of them. Adding a consistent three-point shot to his game would open things up for him big time and make him an inside-outside threat.