Hornets sign teammate of huge draft bust to 2024 Summer League roster

The Charlotte Hornets signed Jorge Soriano, former AAU teammate of James Bouknight, to their Summer League roster.
Charlotte Hornets, James Bouknight, Jorge Soriano, Summer League
Charlotte Hornets, James Bouknight, Jorge Soriano, Summer League / Jacob Kupferman/GettyImages

The offseason is fully underway, and it’s almost time for Summer League. As the Charlotte Hornets get ready for the event, they will have to fill out their roster with young players who they want to take a closer look at.

Obviously, French big man Tidjane Salaun, who Charlotte selected with the No. 6 pick in the 2024 NBA Draft, will highlight the team. Colorado guard KJ Simpson, the Hornets’ second-round pick, is injured, and will not participate.

However, Salaun can’t be the only player on the roster, and one of the guys Charlotte brought on board has a history of playing with a recent Hornets draft bust.

Hornets sign Jorge Soriano, who was AAU teammates with James Bouknight, to Summer League roster

Charlotte signed 24-year-old forward Joel Soriano to their Summer League roster, who played AAU basketball with James Bouknight, who the team waived at the 2024 trade deadline. 

They played for the PSA Cardinals in New York, and Orlando Magic guard Cole Anthony was also on the team.

Bouknight was drafted by the Hornets with No. 11 pick in the 2021 NBA Draft, but he didn’t last in Charlotte. Less than three years after he was picked, the team let him go for nothing.

Soriano is a 6-foot-11 forward who spent five years playing college basketball. He played his first two years at Fordham and the latter three seasons with St. John’s.

In his final season at college, Soriano appeared in 33 games for St. John’s, starting in 31 of them. He averaged 13.8 points, 9.5 rebounds, 1.5 assists, and 1.7 blocks per game while shooting 57.7% from the field.

The big man also shot 43.8% from behind the three-point line, but he only took 16 on the season, making seven of them. Perhaps the Hornets believe in his potential shooting ability. Soriano had not taken a three-pointer in the four previous years he played in college.

Obviously, the fact that Soriano played AAU ball with Bouknight is no indication of the type of player he may be, but it’s interesting to note the connection.

Soriano was a solid shot-blocker in college, and if the Hornets want to get a look at his shot in Summer League and let him let it fly, he will be a fun player to pay attention to during the California Classic and in Las Vegas.