2018-19 Season Preview: Charlotte Hornets

Hornets point guard Kemba Walker has garnered lots of buzz as a possible trade candidate.

Coach: James Borrego (entering his first season).

Last Season: 36-46, did not make playoffs.

Key Returnees: Kemba Walker, Nicolas Batum, Marvin Williams, Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, Cody Zeller, Frank Kaminsky, Malik Monk.

Key Additions: Tony Parker (San Antonio), Bismack Biyombo (Orlando), Miles Bridges (rookie, Michigan State), Devonte’ Graham (rookie, Kansas).

Key Losses: Dwight Howard (Washington), Michael Carter-Williams (Houston).

Outlook: It’s been a year of transition for owner Michael Jordan’s team. He fired general manger Rich Cho and replaced him with fellow former North Carolina star Mitch Kupchak. Coach Steve Clifford was relieved of his duties (landing in Orlando), and replaced by longtime NBA assistant James Borrego. Unfortunately, the transition done at the top of the organization did not trickle down to the actual roster as All-Star guard Kemba Walker is entering the walk year of his contract and there is zero chance of the Hornets signing him to an extension, so if he isn’t dealt by the Feb. 7 trade deadline, Charlotte will lose him without getting anything in return. Dwight Howard was jettisoned after another one-year experience and ended up in Washington. However, the albatross that is Nicolas Batum and his horrific contract extension (five years, $120 million) in 2016 remains inexplicable. Marvin Williams is 32 years old and is being paid $14 million as a starter… and averaged 9.5 points per game last season. The Hornets brought in 36-year-old former Spurs great Tony Parker to back up Walker. They also added Miles Bridges and Devonte’ Graham in the draft and combined with Malik Monk, the team’s No. 1 draft choice a year ago, at least there are some youngsters to try and develop. However, with Walker’s situation possibly coming to a head before Charlotte hosts the 2019 NBA All-Star Game, if he is moved, is there anyone else on the host team’s roster worthy of All-Star consideration?