The 1995 NBA Draft was not kind to the Charlotte Hornets, but Bleacher Report picked an interesting draftee in its re-draft.
During the history of the Charlotte Hornets, the team has made many interesting selections in previous NBA drafts. One draft that was not so strong for the Hornets was 1995, where the Hornets held the 22nd pick.
With their original pick, the Hornets selected George Zidek, who only spent one and a half seasons in Charlotte. During his short stint in Charlotte, Zidek only averaged 3.5 points and 2.3 rebounds per game.
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While fans await the NBA Draft in October, Bleacher Report re-drafted the 1995 draft. Instead of having Charlotte draft Zidek, Bleacher Report had the Hornets draft a different prospect.
In this re-draft, Charlotte would select Andrew DeClercq with their 22nd pick. According to Bleacher Report, with DeClercq being selected at #22, Zidek would not even be drafted in the first round.
DeClercq was a 6’10 center that did not have a lot of offensive success during his career. He was originally selected by the Golden State Warriors, where he only spent two seasons with the team. As a rookie, he averaged 2.7 points and 1.8 rebounds per game.
Over the course of his career, DeClercq was with four teams. He retired following the 2004-05 season, after playing five seasons with the Orlando Magic. Following his career, DeClercq averaged a total of 4.8 points and 4.2 rebounds per game.
Even though Zidek was also a center, would DeClercq have been better if he was drafted by the Hornets? As of now, it looks like DeClercq had the better career and averaged better numbers.
The center position was a definite need for the Hornets during the 1995-96 season. The Hornets traded Alonzo Mourning in November of 1995, which left Zidek, Robert Parrish, and Matt Geiger as the team’s main starters.
I’m unsure how Declercq’s career would’ve turned out differently with the Hornets, as he would’ve likely seen a similar role that Zidek had during his rookie season.
However, one stat that did stand out for Declercq during his career was his rebound rate. He ranked 5th in rebound rates among the 20 picks who were selected in the 1995 draft. Even after having a quiet career, Declercq still proved that he was an efficient rebounder.
Since the Hornets finished the 1994-95 season as a playoff team, did the team make the right call with the 22nd pick? If not, would Andrew DeClercq have had a better career with the Charlotte Hornets?