Charlotte Hornets: 3 goals for the final stretch of the season

Charlotte Hornets. Mandatory Credit: Trevor Ruszkowski-USA TODAY Sports
Charlotte Hornets. Mandatory Credit: Trevor Ruszkowski-USA TODAY Sports /
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Charlotte Hornets
Charlotte Hornets. Mandatory Credit: Nell Redmond-USA TODAY Sports /

The Charlotte Hornets have been a pleasant surprise so far this season. They got lucky in the draft with LaMelo Ball falling to pick No. 3, which the Hornets owned. Some of the things that he has done this season, including being the youngest player ever to record a triple-double, bode well for the future.

They also went out and paid for their new star player Gordon Hayward and the small forward out of Butler has been good. There are two problems for the Hornets here though. One is that Hayward is quite often getting injured.

The second issue is that the Hornets decided to stretch the final year of Nicolas Batum’s $27 million contracts over three years. This means that the cost of getting Hayward was another $9 million a season, which is the value of a decent player. Hopefully, this does not come back to hurt the Hornets.

The Charlotte Hornets have had no luck with injury this season

Hayward has only played 44 of a possible 78 games so far this season. He is currently out with a foot injury and was to be re-evaluated in early May. He may not be back for the regular season which has already hurt the Hornets.

They were in the fourth seed before Hayward and LaMelo Ball got injured. Ball fractured a bone in his right wrist which required surgery to heal. While this meant he fell out of the running for rookie of the year, it also meant the Hornets are fighting for position in the play-in tournament rather than a guaranteed playoff berth.

Let’s take a look at the three goals for the Charlotte Hornets down the stretch.