3 Potential offseason targets to help Hornets improve on the fringe

Mitch Kupchak, Charlotte Hornets (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images)
Mitch Kupchak, Charlotte Hornets (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images) /
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The Charlotte Hornets add Payton Pritchard to their guard rotation

Payton Pritchard, Boston Celtics
Payton Pritchard, Boston Celtics (Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images) /

Since the Boston Celtics acquired Malcolm Brogdon last season, Payton Pritchard has found playing time difficult to come by. Yet, during the Celtics’ run to the 2022 NBA Finals, Pritchard was a valuable contributor to their rotation.

During the build-up to the February 9 trade deadline, Pritchard was vocal about his desire to be traded and is widely expected to be moved over the summer. As such, the Charlotte Hornets would be smart to kick the tires on the sharpshooting guards’ trade value.

"“I definitely do. It’s obviously what I work for. I think that’s what Brad and them know, too,” Pritchard said during a January 29 appearance on the Point Forward podcast with Evan Turner and Andre Iguodala. “We’ve had that discussion but — a bigger role. I want to be part of a winning culture but I want to also help that, be a really big piece of that. I’m not saying it’s the best player on the team but I don’t know what my future holds unless I can take that next step. I don’t know what it is in five or 10 years but I just want to look back and know that I put my best foot forward. I put all the work in so whatever happens I can live with as long as I did it my way. That’s the most important thing for me.”"

Throughout his three years in the NBA, Pritchard has participated in 185 regular-season games for the Celtics, averaging 6.6 points, 2.1 rebounds, and 1.1 assists per game while shooting the rock at a 43% clip from the field and 40% clip from deep.

Given Pritchard’s ability to space the floor, push the pace, orchestrate an offensive via the pick-and-roll, play both guard positions, and add value as an off-ball inverted screener, he would provide the Hornets with an upgrade to their bench rotation and help solve some of their offensive issues. 

Fortunately, Pritchard doesn’t project to have a huge asking price, which could work in the Hornets’ favor, considering their recent history of making deals with the Celtics.