There is a very good chance the 2023-24 season will unravel at some point soon for the Charlotte Hornets. Despite suggestions from the organization that they are not going to pull the plug on their current roster configuration, there is going to come a time when they realize that is their only option.
With the assumption the Hornets will eventually come to terms with this year being one that will not be competitive, it should result in the organization being more willing to listen to players who are clearly not part of their future. One player in particular would be veteran forward Gordon Hayward.
Hayward was recently included in a mock trade proposal between the Charlotte Hornets and Detroit Pistons. Bleacher Report's Dan Favale suggested that the two sides would be worthy trade partners that sees two teams near or at the bottom of the Eastern Conference shaking things up a bit. Hayward would head to Detroit with Charlotte receiving Killian Hayes, Joe Harris, and a 2024 second round pick in return
It is the defense of Hayes and the potential of Harris' outside shooting frequency upon his return from injury that are motivating factors for Charlotte in this deal, while Detroit sees the benefit of removing players who take time away from Jaden Ivey.
"Grabbing a flier on Hayes' defense ahead of restricted free agency is a worthwhile investment, and the included second-rounder is guaranteed to land in the early 30s. Harris is currently out with a shoulder issue, and it seems his scintillating-shooter days are behind him. But he comes off the books after this season and is, at worst, break-in-case-of-emergency outside volume when healthy."- Dan Favale
Is this the most exciting deal for the Hornets? Not necessarily. However, having a chance to add a young guard who is better than several other options who have yet to carve out a meaningful role in Charlotte is not one that should be passed up. Additionally, having someone who is a restricted rather than unrestricted free agent gives the Hornets a slight advantage in their efforts to retain him beyond this season if they so choose to.
When it comes to Harris, it is about hopefully seeing his three-point conversion rate trend back upward toward his 2.3 makes on 44% during his time in Brooklyn. Even if it is somewhere in the middle of his down performance in Detroit and his average with the Nets, it would still prove beneficial to a team that is in the bottom third of three-point makes per game (11.4).