2. Mark Williams
Having a solid big man can make the path to postseason play significantly easier for teams navigating the waters of irrelevance. That is what the Charlotte Hornets have in Mark Williams.
Williams is turning into an impressive center for Charlotte, averaging 14.6 points and 7.9 rebounds in 25 minutes per game this season. The second-year big man has managed to improve his per-game averages while seeing more time on the court, which should bode well for his future development.
Williams’ average of just under 8 rebounds per game is the top rebounding average for anyone on the Hornets and the fifth-highest in scoring. Having someone who can clean up down low on both ends of the floor while being a consistent scorer from inside three feet.
The former Duke Blue Devil does have some work to do offensively, as being able to convert from a little bit further away would help the Hornets’ offense have a bit more space for everyone to operate effectively.
When taking the Hornets’ team trajectory and contrasting that with the expected progression of their second-year center, it is hard to imagine a world where the Hornets are not able to make the postseason while they have Williams on the roster. At just 22 years old, Williams should be able to make a tangible impact on this organization by the time they are ready to compete for the postseason.