There are a few words that can be used to describe the Charlotte Hornets’ offseason. But it is one, in particular, appearing in a recent article on Bleacher Report that seems quite fitting. In Greg Swartz’s 1 Word to Describe Every NBA Team’s Offseason, the word chosen for the Hornets was “Wingman.”. Swartz notes that the Hornets may have been able to find a wingman to add to their starting lineup due to a lackluster 2022-23 campaign.
"“Getting a true running mate for LaMelo Ball has been a priority for the Charlotte Hornets for years now, and thanks to a disastrous 2022-23 season, the team may have finally found one with No. 2 overall pick Brandon Miller.”"
Charlotte needs to find a star to pair with LaMelo Ball. The Hornets opted to go in a different direction than many expected them to and chose Brandon Miller over presumptive second-overall pick Scoot Henderson. While this choice received plenty of criticism, the decision-makers in Charlotte believe they have made the right selection.
While it is noted that Miller may not be a star player from the jump, Swartz believes that Miller has “an ideal NBA frame and skill set to thrive as a wing next to Ball.“. This is good news for everyone placing faith in Miller turning into a competent NBA player at the bare minimum. It would also decide to draft Miller over Henderson significantly more palatable.
It is essential to keep in mind the current roster makeup of the Hornets when evaluating realistic expectations for this season. This is a very young team in terms of foundational players on the roster, and the few veterans on this roster may be moved at or before the NBA trade deadline. With that in mind, the win-loss column should not be the priority when evaluating whether or not this season is a success. It is about analyzing how certain players fit together and which player(s) are not part of their long-term plans. Chemistry and development are the focus in Charlotte, although being in the mix for the Play-In Tournament would be a nice secondary goal for the Hornets this season.