Biggest threat to lure Walker from Hornets? The Mavs

Hornets point guard Kemba Walker will be a free agent in July.

With Kemba Walker primed to hit the free-agent market come July, there will be a long list of suitors for the All-Star point guard of the Charlotte Hornets.

Which NBA team poses the biggest threat to lure Walker out of Charlotte?

The Dallas Mavericks, according to Rick Bonnell of the Charlotte Observer.

“Threats to sign Kemba Walker away from the Charlotte Hornets this summer? Place this team at the top of your list: The Dallas Mavericks,” Bonnell writes. “Two sources with knowledge of the Mavericks’ thinking expect Walker, the Hornets’ three-time All-Star point guard, to be that team’s top target when NBA free-agency begins July 1.”

The struggles of the Mavericks this season — Dallas finished 27-39 — would not deter Walker from heading to Big D, Bonnell says.

“Although the Mavericks are only 27-39 this season — second-worst record in the Western Conference — they will have both the salary-cap flexibility to offer a free agent a maximum contract this summer and an appealing future to pitch with abundant young talent on the roster,” he writes.

Charlotte remains a place near and dear to Walker’s heart, however.

“I love it,” he said of the city in a Bleacher Report story Jan. 14. “I love it. It’s perfect for me. The pace of the city is pretty slow, which I love. It’s not fast-paced like New York. … I’m able to just live pretty much a normal life.

“I’m able to go out and eat and not really be bothered. Go to the mall and walk around, not really be bothered. That’s what I like, personally. That’s the kind of life I like to live.”