Hornets Make Big Unexpected Reach with No. 6 Pick

The Charlotte Hornets make a big mistake with their first-round pick.
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The long wait is over and the Charlotte Hornets have made their draft pick. With the No. 6 overall pick in the 2024 NBA Draft, the Hornets picked 18-year-old French forward Tidjane Salaün. The 6'10 prospect is considered a raw talent despite having a high upside on both ends of the floor.

This is a shocking selection by the Hornets. Salaün was not projected to be a top-ten pick in most mock drafts and there haven't been any rumors about other teams in this range being interested in him. The Hornets have been linked to Donovan Clingan and Dalton Knecht over the last couple of years and both players were on the board when it was Charlotte's turn to pick.

However, what makes this a confusing decision by the Hornets is the fact that they didn't trade down. If Salaün was in fact their top prospect on their board, they should have traded down and added more assets in the process. It's hard to imagine that he wouldn't have been available later in the lottery.

This could work out. The draft is almost always a crapshoot. There is a chance Salaün turns out to be the best player selected in this range. He is a smart player who is a good cutter off the ball. He is aggressive, active, and plays with a ton of energy. He has a soft touch and a good shooting form. Combine that with his size and length and you have a very intriguing young player.

More than the prospect evaluation, the problem here is asset management. The Hornets should have made a trade to add more draft capital while still landing their top prospect.

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