Hornets Miles Bridges makes bold free agency decision

Miles Bridges, Charlotte Hornets. (Photo by Jacob Kupferman/Getty Images)
Miles Bridges, Charlotte Hornets. (Photo by Jacob Kupferman/Getty Images) /

Miles Bridges will be returning to the Charlotte Hornets rotation next season. According to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski, Bridges has accepted his qualifying offer to return to Charlotte before becoming an unrestricted free agent next summer.

After missing the entirety of the 2022-23 season due to legal issues surrounding a domestic violence incident, Bridges has likely struggled to find the type of contract he was hoping for. As such, making the decision to return to the Hornets rotation next season is likely a play to rebuild his value around the NBA.

Securing Bridges services for approximately $7.9 million is a win for Charlotte. That win will also create serious headaches throughout the basketball year. Should Bridges return to the rotation and play at, or close to, the level he showed during the 2021-22 season, he will undoubtedly receive attention during the 2024 free agency period – where the Hornets could lose him without getting anything back in return.

Bridges’ decision shows that he’s betting on himself to impress and avoid any further off-court trouble during the upcoming season. It’s likely that Bridges is also banking on having a similar role to the one he comprised last time he was available to feature with the Hornets.

During the 21-22 season, Miles Bridges participated in 80 regular-season games, averaging 20.2 points, 3.8 assists, and 7 rebounds per game, shooting 59% from two-point range and 33.1% from deep. Given the Hornets’ lack of offensive firepower last season, Bridges will likely be thrust back into a starting role, where he can resume his budding ‘AirBnB’ partnership with LaMelo Ball – who signed a max contract extension on July 1. 

Charlotte will get one of their most talented players back next season. Bridges will be motivated and eager to prove he’s worth the type of contract his agents are likely requesting during negotiations. And, of course, the Hornets could always continue working toward a potential extension throughout the season in a bid to keep their talented backcourt together for the foreseeable future.

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