What will a nine-man rotation look like for the Charlotte Hornets?

Steve Clifford, Charlotte Hornets. Mandatory Credit: Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports
Steve Clifford, Charlotte Hornets. Mandatory Credit: Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports /
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Charlotte Hornets – Second Unit:

The bench will consist of four players, which puts Clifford into a really tough decision between two players in particular. This prediction for the bench rotation includes Dennis Smith Jr., Cody Martin, Kelly Oubre, and Nick Richards.

Dennis Smith Jr. has been a solid addition to the team, as he is averaging 13.5 points, 6.3 assists, and 2.3 steals per game in 28.5 minutes per night. He is also shooting 50% from three-point range. His most impressive trait is his tenacious defense. He is constantly causing loose balls and turnovers, something that the Hornets have needed in recent years.

Cody Martin just signed an extension in the summer and is the Hornets’ best perimeter defender. He will need to see solid minutes nightly in order to boost the defense. He has been banged up, but once he is healthy, expect to see plenty of minutes for Martin.

Kelly Oubre has played well so far. Scoring from all three levels is a good sign for Oubre as it seemed that he would settle for ill-advised three-pointers last season. He looks much better on defense this season as well.

Nick Richards has been a revelation so far, as Steve Clifford alluded to this summer. Richards looks faster, stronger, and more confident in his role. He recently had a career game against the Atlanta Hawks, tallying 20 points and 11 rebounds with two blocks. If his play continues, he could be taking the starting center role away from Plumlee at some point this season.