Ok, let’s pretend that Steve Clifford is the reason why Malik Monk isn’t playing significant minutes in the NBA.
If we can just watch these highlights from those handful of weeks before Nic Batum had recovered from a wrist injury, we might just be able to convince ourselves that Monk’s offense could compensate for his inability to guard any NBA player at the one or two-guard position.
Note: It looks like these enthusiastic highlight reels are high-quality curated content courtesy of whoever is trying to sell basketball gloves in the pre-roll ads. If you can just get past that, you’ll believe that there really are some excited and dedicated Malik Monk fans out there – not content farms automating highlights for obscure basketball players.
Nevertheless, the YouTube video research does support the theory that when Monk gets hot – he’s pretty darn good. It’s just that the Hornets can’t afford to give him 15-20 shots to find his rhythm every night.
That might be the issue. He needs to play for a team committed to being lousy, so he can just shoot his way through games. Unfortunately, he was picked high by an aspiring team that needed a lot more from a draft pick this past Summer in order to make the Playoffs. If Monk was on the Spurs, he’d never get off the bench. But, maybe the Hornets should accept that they aren’t on par with the Popovichian dynasty and just tell Malik to fire away for 25mins a night.
Without being too hard on the guy, fans should be reminded that he’s still only 20 years old. So, he’s been able to do some good things for a young guy at his first job. If Monk can progress and build his skillset as a pro, maybe we’ll see him in the rotation next year. Then, it would be nice to watch him evolve and make the push into the starting five. Thus far, that seems pretty lofty for the rookie we’ve seen. Yet, Malik is the irrational confidence guy on the roster and I’d bet that he’s targeting All-Star MVP for 2019.
Let’s put it out there, already. Could Malik Monk be an NBA All-Star someday?
The Hornets are going to make their pick at selection number 11 next week. Who should they choose to add to their roster? It might be tough to find a young prospect that can contribute immediately, but let’s hope they land a talent that can develop and produce sooner than later.
Share your opinions on who’s name the Hornets should call on Thursday night.
This Summer, the Hornets GM Rich Cho is up against the wall. He’s had control over the rebuilding effort since the end of the Bobcats days, and he’s put in a ton of work to get the club’s operations up to par with the rest of the league. Nevertheless, the team looks trapped in 8–10 seed purgatory for the foreseeable future.
It’s been noted that the salary cap is going to prohibit the Hornets from adding much talent through free agency. Although they were unlikely to recruit any of the few top-tier players on the market, their current collection of contracts limits there spending considerably. One of the biggest burdens is also one of Cho’s biggest mistakes – the contract that guarantees Miles Plumlee an unwarranted $12,400,000 annual salary (plus benefits).
So for 45 games played scoring an average of 2.5 points per game, Plumlee earned $109,734 per point last season. For a backup center, his $130,526 per rebound is quite the take for the year, too.
In the year 2021, the Hornets will finally conclude their contractual responsibilities with Plumlee. Did Rich Cho see some sort of diamond-in-the-rough promise in Miles Plumlee when he dealt Spencer Hawes and Roy Hibbert? Is it possible to get any production or value from the big man next season?
On Sunday morning, Charlotte Hornets wingman Nicolas Batum will hit the court with teammates Tony Parker, Boris Diaw, Rudy Gobert, and Florent Pietrus (who might only sound familiar to serious Bobcats fans) to face Team USA in the Rio Olympic Games. This could be one of the most most competitive games to watch in the basketball tournament this summer. While Kevin Durant or Paul George may not be dominated by Batum, it’s worth tuning in to see how the Hornets’ top free agent signing performs against the best-of-the-best.
So far, Batum hasn’t been too impressive in this summer’s games, but the US squad hasn’t looked quite that intimidating in their last two appearances, either.
Of course, the 24hr media cycle devoted to Curry’s dominant performance against the Hornets was well deserved. The hometown phenom effortlessly hit long-range shots that no other player would have the guts to attempt, and put up 40pts in only three quarters of action.
After the latest episode of the Steph show, the online hoops outlets have finally put the spotlight on the competition. Unfortunately, Kemba Walker has been elected to represent the Demoralized Opponent Tasked with Guarding Steph Curry.
Despite the task of installing a new offensive system in the last year of his contract, Hornets coach Steve Clifford received a vote of confidence from the team’s executives this past week. Clifford gained a well-deserved sense of security after coming to terms with the club on a multi-year extension. This should bode well for the organization, the coaching staff, and the still-congealing roster learning to play by Clifford’s fundamentals.
Now in his third season as head coach, it’s nice to hear a bit more swagger from his interviews. His bravado came through loud and clear when discussing how his extension could impact the team as a whole. The Charlotte Observer’s Rick Bonnell played a little tee-ball with Clifford, and asked him how his contract extension could possibly affect Nicolas Batum’s upcoming free agency. Here’s the coach’s response:
“(Batum) trusts me. He believes in me. So that could be a big factor.”
From a few rows back, it’s easy to see that the Charlotte basketball franchise is now legitimate with Steve Clifford at the helm. We need to take this Thanksgiving weekend to be grateful for that. The forefathers of the team – Bernie Bickerstaff, Sam Vincent, Larry Brown, Paul Silas, and Mike Dunlap – captained a franchise that was mostly a joke, a sucker, or a d-league affiliate to the other 29 members of the Association. The Hornets’ remarkable turnaround hasn’t been entirely the result of Clifford’s work, but he’s been a big part of the equation. Let’s hope that they can maintain the momentum with “Cliff” in charge.