Is Hornets’ chance of improving in 2023-24 being bought or sold?

LaMelo Ball, Charlotte Hornets. (Photo by Jacob Kupferman/Getty Images)
LaMelo Ball, Charlotte Hornets. (Photo by Jacob Kupferman/Getty Images) /

The 2022-23 season did not go to plan for the Charlotte Hornets. A team ravaged by injuries and subsequent poor performance stumbled to a 27-55 record, ultimately ending up with the second overall pick in the most recent NBA Draft. While it is incredibly easy to envision this team being better in this upcoming season, is that the expectation?

Bleacher Report’s Greg Swartz recently broke down the chances of lottery teams from last year improving upon last season. When it comes to the Hornets, there are plenty of reasons to buy those chances in Swartz’s eyes.

"“Charlotte added Brandon Miller with the No. 2 overall pick and should see a second-year leap from promising young center Mark Williams. There’s enough veteran help on this roster (Terry Rozier, Gordon Hayward, P.J. Washington) to keep the Hornets in the playoff hunt as well.”"

The combination of veterans and young talent makes it easy to buy the prospect of the Hornets being better this year. While not mentioned specifically in this section, star point guard LaMelo Ball is a young player who now has three years under his belt, which is a nice middle ground between the youth on the roster (Brandon Miller and Mark Williams), and the older players on the roster (Terry Rozier and Gordon Hayward).

However, Ball is mentioned under the “reasons to sell” portion of the article. Ball missed most of last season due to injuries, and that was one of many factors as to why this team struggled. The young point guard is the most talented player on the team, and their chances of improving are highly dependent on Ball being available. If he ends up missing a sizable chunk of the season again, it is possible that the Hornets will not improve upon last season’s underwhelming win total.

When it comes down to it, Swartz is buying Charlotte’s chances of improving in 2023-24, classifying it as “one of the easiest buys of any lottery team“. It is hard to argue with this assessment as the widely accepted this will be much more competitive in this upcoming season. It all comes down to health and young players fulfilling their potential. While likely, it is not a guarantee, and that is why some may be hesitant to buy into Charlotte’s ability to be better this season.