Is this The Year of Terry Rozier?

Terry Rozier, Charlotte Hornets. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports
Terry Rozier, Charlotte Hornets. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports /

Charlotte Hornets guard Terry Rozier has had a remarkable career, and after getting off to a bit of a slow start with the Boston Celtics, Rozier has become a staple in Charlotte.

Cheers begin to form when Rozier streaks down the court and punishes the rim with a high-flying dunk that defies the logic of what his relatively small frame should be capable of. However, an even more impressive feat may be how seamlessly Rozier has fit into Charlotte’s rotation alongside LaMelo Ball.

Rozier went from averaging 9 points per game in his final year with the Celtics to averaging 19.2 points per game over the course of his three seasons with the Hornets. He has also upped his assist from 2.9 assists per game in his final year in Boston to 4.2 assists per game so far in his tenure in Charlotte.

The statistics reveal a picture of what fans have seen from the beginning; a gritty player with a wicked streetball bag to dip into and a desire to prove the naysayers wrong. His 2017-18 season with the Celtics was reflective of just that, as Rozier took a leadership role on a team that came within one win of an NBA finals appearance without Kyrie Irving or Gordon Hayward.

After being dealt to Charlotte in 2019 as part of the Kemba Walker sign-and-trade, Rozier led the team in games played and was second in scoring behind Devonte’ Graham.

Now, the 28-year-old adds a veteran presence to the locker room while guiding Ball in the art of ankle-breaking. Rozier erupted for 35 points on two occasions last season, indicating that his explosive burst and scoring threat still unquestionably exist.

Rozier has been honing his craft ahead of the 2022-23 season.

Rozier will have ample opportunity this year, and the Hornets need him to capitalize

Rozier’s 19.3 points per game last season were third on the team behind Ball and Miles Bridges. Due to the legal troubles Bridges has brought upon himself this offseason, Rozier is poised to take another step forward this coming season with more scoring responsibility.

Look for the shifty guard to increase his scoring numbers in his seventh season while embracing the role of right-hand man alongside Ball. Still only 28 years old, Rozier has plenty of time left before he begins to decline, and with a team craving respect in a top-heavy league, he has a chance to prove his worth by helping guide Charlotte to a playoff berth.

If he can take advantage of the opportunity, 2022-23 could be looked back upon as “The Year of Terry Rozier”.