BROOKLYN, N.Y. (CHARLOTTE SPORTS LIVE/AP) – The draft begins Thursday at 7:30 p.m. at the Barclays Center in New York.
The Charlotte Hornets own the 13th, and 15th picks in the first round. They additionally hold the 45th in the second.
The franchise is entering the draft with no head coach, as Kenny Atkinson decided he will not take on the duty after he originally agreed to terms on a four-year contract with the team.
Atkinson would have replaced former head coach James Borrego, who Hornets owner Michael Jordan fired on April 22.
So that leaves fans wondering, what the heck is going to happen Thursday.
“It is unusual not to have a head coach in place for the draft,” ESPN draft analyst Jay Bilas said in a conference call. “You certainly like to keep in mind what your head coach wants to do and how (the player) likes to play. But it’s certainly not the be-all and end-all because most coaches have input, but they don’t make those decisions.”
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The team has a bevy of needs, most notably finding a big man who can score and serve as a rim protector.
Charlotte has some potential trade prospects — including Gordon Hayward, Terry Rozier, and P.J. Washington — that could potentially be part of a draft-night deal.
Common names spiraling the internet for potential first-round Hornet picks include:
- Jeremy Sochan, Forward, Baylor
- Mark Williams, Big, Duke
- AJ Griffin, Wing, Duke
- Malaki Branham, Wing, Ohio State
One question facing the Hornets is how much they want to change their roster without a coach in place.