The Charlotte Hornets may look at small forwards at the trade deadline instead of doing something more drastic.
The Charlotte Hornets need to be buyers at the trade deadline and while they could put together a big deal, it is far more likely that they will do a smaller deal to pick up someone who could fill that hole left by Michael Kidd-Gilchrist at the three spot. Ideally the Hornets would be looking to get somebody from a team that is going nowhere at the moment.
One of those teams is the New Orleans Pelicans, but the player I thought would make sense from them is Tyreke Evans and he just got listed as out for the season before the All Star Break. So clearly that target no longer makes sense.
Another team not going anywhere is the Brooklyn Nets. They have Joe Johnson sitting out there with his massive $24.9 million dollar salary. Johnson could fill in at the three spot and offer an offensive threat there. However to get Johnson the Hornets would have to give the salaries of Al Jefferson and Marvin Williams. Johnson has also not been particular impressive this year, though his play might improve if he was on a winning team. Johnson would be a free agent after the year.
In the East, the Knicks have been disappointed by output this year. The Knicks have Aaron Afflalo, but the Hornets would have to sacrifice Williams (and possibly Brian Roberts) to get him. If the Hornets believe they can do that and survive then maybe this is something they would look at.
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In the West there are teams other than the Pelicans looking to deal. The Houston Rockets are trying to make any number of deals. Their roster includes Trevor Ariza, who would be a good fit at the three for the Hornets. They also have Corey Brewer and K.J. McDaniels, who would be more defense oriented guys. Brewer is a good locker room guy.
The Rockets also might need a big guy if they succeed in trading Dwight Howard. In fact the Hornets might piggy back as a third team in a Howard trade if they are not the ones dealing for Howard themselves. The Hornets could send Williams or Spencer Hawes to get Ariza or Brewer, or include Jefferson in a bigger deal.
Behind the Rockets are the Nuggets and they have Danilo Gallinari. He is their best player right now and it is hard to see them parting with him but he makes similar money to Jefferson. If not Gallinari then perhaps a deal for Wilson Chandler would make sense as he would offer some length at the three position. Not a big fan of the tattoos though.
So if the Hornets were to make a small deal, this is the lay of the land. The Hornets do return to action against Milwaukee on the 19th of February.