The Charlotte Hornets are preparing to tank and their franchise centerpiece is now available.
The Charlotte Hornets have reportedly made star point guard Kemba Walker available for trade, according to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski.
Charlotte has been encouraging teams to make offers and seem eager to discuss attaching Walker to a larger trade where another team takes on one of the Hornets’ several far less desirable contracts, sources said.
Walker, 27, who makes $12 million per season through 2018-19, has developed into something rare among Charlotte’s cornerstone players: a talent whose production outperforms his pay stub. Walker is the Hornets’ best, most popular and culture-driving player.
Ultimately, Charlotte knows that trading Walker in any deal would be a reset for the franchise.
According to Wojnarowski, the Hornets had already attempted to move Nicolas Batum, Dwight Howard, Marvin Williams and Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, with all those players having impossible contracts to move.
Walker, a 2017 Eastern Conference All-Star selection last season, is averaging 21.7 points on 42 percent shooting and 5.8 assists per game.
The Cavs aren’t going to guard anyway and they need scoring alongside playmakers to keep up with the Celtics and Warriors, so why not?
The Pistons could offer wing options like Stanley Johnson or Luke Kennard and starter Reggie Jackson in exchange for Walker.
The big men Anthony Davis and DeMarcus Cousins have proven they can work together, now they need another scorer besides Rondo to make things official.\
The Suns’ future hinges on Marquese Chriss, Josh Jackson and Dragan Bender improving to where Devin Booker is, but they need a leader as well.
The Magic started 8-4 — yet have gone 4-27 since — likely leading to everyone being available with most pundits focusing on the likes of Evan Fournier, Elfrid Payton and Mario Hezonj.