Kemba Walker has come a long way since his terrible rookie season back in 2011-12. He’s now the all-time leader in points for the Charlotte Hornets. He has been an All-Star in back-to-back seasons as the lone bright spot for the Hornets recently. Charlotte has won 36 games these past two seasons and they fired Steve Clifford. They hired James Borrego who was a Spurs assistant.
All eyes will be on Kemba Walker because this is his final year under contract. He will be an unrestricted free agent and is expected to receive a big pay raise after being an All-Star. He has stated numerous times that he wants to stay in Charlotte but with this lack of talent on the roster the Hornets may trade him to bring in some young assets and draft picks.
Walker finished last season with his 3rd straight 20 ppg season. He shot 38% from 3-point while taking 7.5 per game and he also did a better job of getting to the free throw line. The Hornets did not make any impact moves in the off-season. They added Tony Parker who has a relationship with the new coach but at this point in his career he’s not swinging any games. Hopefully Malik Monk takes a step forward and rookie Miles Bridges may have an impact.
Walker loves it in Charlotte but it might be time for him to move. The Hornets can’t afford to have another big contract on the books with no progress towards the playoffs. Nicolas Batum, Marvin Williams and Cody Zeller are still under contract after the 2019-20 season. This team needs to go younger and build around Monk and Bridges. Walker is their best asset and although many teams don’t need a point guard, Walker can be an upgrade for some teams.
An early injury could see Walker being moved by Christmas. His name will be in rumors all season. If he’s having another productive year for a bad team he will be shopped early and often. With the lack of roster upgrades the Hornets will struggle again this season and should be a contender as a tanker after the All-Star break.
Kemba Walker had a great run in Charlotte but I expect him to finish the season in another jersey. If he stays in the East, he should make another All-Star team. It will be a long season for the Hornets but fans should appreciate Kemba Walker while they have him.