Welcome to Buzz City Beat, a daily roundup of the best articles from around the internet surrounding the Charlotte Hornets.
The Charlotte Hornets, along with the Orlando Magic and the New York Knicks, are set to interview Jerry Stackhouse for their head coaching position. (Shams) In this edition of Buzz City Beat, we look at Charlotte’s biggest mistake, Tom Thibodeau praising Steve Clifford and how Kemba Walker can get back to the playoffs.
Charlotte’s biggest mistake (Fadeawayworld.com)
Bearing the facts in mind, it’s hard not to think that the Hornets wouldn’t be better with Mitchell leading the show instead of Monk… a vision the coach they just fired actually wanted. There have certainly been worse times for buzz city, we’ve all seen them. But if they ever wish to become a serious contender, they’ve got to make better judgment calls.
Even though Donovan Mitchell had a great rookie campaign, I’m not willing to admit that the Hornets made a mistake by taking Malik Monk just yet. We’ll have to wait and see where both players are at in a couple years. Although, if Charlotte would’ve taken Mitchell, they would probably be in the playoffs and Steve Clifford would still have his job.
Hopefully, the decision to select Monk over Mitchell won’t haunt the Hornets for too long. Malik already showed immense improvement at the end of his rookie season. Although Donovan did have much better numbers during his first year in the NBA, it’s important to note that he’s almost two years older than Monk.
Tom Thibodeau praises Steve Clifford (Twitter/ @MarkBermanFox26)
Tom Thibodeau on Steve Clifford who was fired by the
@hornets: “From where that program was when he got there to where it is today, he did an unbelievable job.”
Thibodeau and Clifford have a close relationship as the two were assistant coaches under Jeff Van Gundy from 2000-2007 with both the New York Knicks and the Houston Rockets. Tom mentioned that Steve is a great coach and that he proved that with Charlotte. He also said that Clifford deserves to get another coaching opportunity.
Steve Clifford did do a lot for the Hornets and helped them from a team that was 40 games under .500 to a team that made the playoffs in two of his five seasons in the Queen City. Although there were some low points during his tenure, Cliff did help with the growth of Kemba Walker and putting the team back on the map. He will go down as the second-winningest coach in franchise history.
How Kemba and the Hornets can get back to the playoffs (BleacherReport.com)
In other words, Walker needs to spend a lot of gym time with Cody Zeller, Jeremy Lamb and Malik Monk this offseason, since internal improvement is the Hornets’ best chance.
Walker desperately needs the rest of Charlotte’s roster to improve this summer whether that be through internal growth or trades. They don’t have the cap space to get a big name free agent this offseason but they may be able to get an immediate impact player through the draft. Aside from that, Monk taking the next step in his development would be a huge addition.
Another surefire way for Kemba to get back to the postseason is for the all-star point guard to demand a trade to a contending team. Although that is unlikely, there is a possibility that the Hornets could move Walker this summer or before the trade deadline meaning that he could end up on a different team even if he doesn’t ask to be traded.