Player News - Hornets

Date: Team: Pos:

Hornets coach Steve Clifford said that Cody Zeller has "improved in all areas" this summer, but he faces stiff competition from Marvin Williams for the starting PF job.

Zeller projects as a reserve big man behind Williams and Al Jefferson, but it's encouraging to hear Clifford praising his offseason progress. "He’s worked hard at his shooting, and he’s a lot stronger," Clifford said. "And he worked on all his post moves." Bismack Biyombo should absorb any available backup minutes at C, leaving Zeller to compete with Williams and rookie Noah Vonleh (hernia surgery) at the PF spot. It's not a recipe for fantasy success.
Sep 14 - 11:03 PM

Marvin Williams will play both forward spots for the Hornets, according to coach Steve Clifford.

Clifford said he can use him as a stretch four and he could take some triples in that role. Williams had an up-and-down season in Utah, but the Hornets paid big bucks to add some depth. He's not worth targeting in most leagues.
Sep 13 - 9:44 PM

Al Jefferson (foot) has been at voluntary workouts with the Hornets and is pain-free.

He also doesn't have any restrictions from his plantar fasciitis. Jefferson bookended his 2013-14 season with an ankle injury in the preseason and a foot injury in the postseason, so he will carry some injury risk. Although, he did score 24.5 points per game after the break and will be one of the highest-scoring big men in the NBA.
Sep 13 - 9:43 PM

Coach Steve Clifford said Gerald Henderson can play both wing spots with the Hornets this season.

"Some shooting guards can play small forward, but only in certain matchups," Clifford said. "He can play [either position] against almost anybody." Henderson hasn't been a per-minute stat guy, so he's going to have a tough time being a consistent asset in most fantasy leagues.
Sep 13 - 9:40 PM

Coach Steve Clifford said that Michael Kidd-Gilchrist has transformed some of his shooting mechanics in his jump shot.

His jumper was about as smooth as a piece of sandpaper and he couldn't even make 25 percent of his jump shots last season. Clifford said MKG looks more confident and he's spent plenty of time with Kemba Walker and Gary Neal this summer. Still, there's no reason to target him in almost any league.
Sep 13 - 9:37 PM

Noah Vonleh's hernia injury will "definitely" affect how quickly he gets playing time, according to coach Steve Clifford.

Clifford added that the lottery pick made strides at Las Vegas, but he's said before that he's concerned about Vonleh being ready for consistent minutes even before the injury. While he has alluring upside in keeper leagues, Vonleh's redraft value doesn't look to appealing right now.
Sep 13 - 9:33 PM

Jeff Taylor (Achilles) is dealing with a personal matter in Sweden and he is not with the team.

He did some workouts in Las Vegas Summer League and it sounds like he's going to be close to 100 percent. Coach Steve Clifford said Taylor is fine medically and he's just concerned with continuity with his new teammates. Taylor looked terrific before tearing his Achilles last year, but the addition of Lance Stephenson takes away some minutes on the wing.
Sep 13 - 9:30 PM

Lance Stephenson stated during a recent interview that he's been working on his jump shot this offseason.

"I've worked a lot on my body, my conditioning," said Stephenson. "Jump shots, defense, and just being consistent." It's good that Born Ready has been working on his jumper as he shot just 29.9 percent from 10-16 feet last season, so we'll see during training camp and preseason if that work has paid off. Stephenson led the league in triple-doubles last season, and he'll be a focal point of the Hornet's offense, making him worthy of a mid-round selection come draft day.
Source: NBA.com
Sep 12 - 7:11 PM

The Hornets have given free agent PF/C Dallas Lauderdale an unguaranteed contract for training camp.

Lauderdale, a 25-year who spent four years at Ohio State, played in the D-League for the past two seasons. He blocked 3.1 shots per game for the Stampede last year, with 7.5 points and 8.7 rebounds per game, but he's unlikely to make the Hornets' final roster.
Sep 9 - 4:12 PM

Al Jefferson (plantar fasciitis) confirmed that his foot has completely healed after taking a few weeks to rest after the playoffs.

Big Al has resumed full basketball activities without any setbacks, and he said that he's "committed to improving [himself] on the defensive end." Charlotte was sixth in the NBA in defensive efficiency last season with Jefferson pitching in 0.9 steals and 1.1 blocks per game. He provides a steady 20 points and 10 rebounds and has missed an average of just 4.8 games over the past five seasons, solidifying him as a second-round fantasy value.
Source: NBA.com
Sep 9 - 3:09 PM

Hornets rookie Noah Vonleh will miss 6-8 weeks after having surgery to fix a sports hernia.

Vonleh will miss training camp, a valuable opportunity to establish himself in coach Steve Clifford's rotation, and he'll begin the season buried behind Marvin Williams and Cody Zeller on the depth chart. Beat writer Rick Bonnell reports that Vonleh "was not expected to have a significant role as a rookie," which makes sense as the Hornets are coming off a playoff appearance and will likely emphasize wins over player development.
Sep 2 - 5:50 PM

Lance Stephenson has released a freestyle rap that gave a shoutout to Indiana and Kemba Walker.

With his free agency destination settled, Stephenson tried his hand at the hip hop game and released a basketball-themed freestyle rap. While the NSFW rap can be heard in the link, Born Ready will enter the 2014-15 season as one of the focal points of the Hornets' offense and warrants a mid-round pick in fall fantasy drafts.
Source: FanSided
Aug 26 - 11:29 AM

The Hornets signed P.J. Hairston to a rookie-scale deal on Friday.

It's taken a while for the Hornets to come to terms, and perhaps his off-the-court issues were a factor. Hairston was busy at Las Vegas Summer League with a lot of 3-pointers, but he'll only be a situational guy to start the season. He won't be fantasy relevant while Lance Stephenson and Gerald Henderson are healthy.
Aug 22 - 1:20 PM

Gerald Henderson admitted that he had an "up-and-down" 2013-14 season, but he's ready to compete for playing time in the Hornets' crowded wing rotation.

The five-year veteran started all 77 games in which he played last year, but shot only 43.3 percent from the field. Lance Stephenson is a lock to start at SG which leaves Henderson battling Michael Kidd-Gilchrist and Jeff Taylor for the SF job, where he has played one-fifth of his minutes throughout his career. The additional presence of Gary Neal and rookie P.J. Hairston makes it questionable whether Henderson can match last year's 32.0 minutes per game, something fantasy owners should keep in mind on draft day.

The Hornets are reportedly putting together a bid to host the 2017 or 2018 All-Star game.

Commissioner Adam Silver has said that the likelihood of Charlotte securing an All-Star game would be dependent upon certain upgrades to the arena. "It’s part of the understanding here that the building remain state of the art," Silver said. "Nothing dramatic is needed. But certainly an upgrade to the scoreboard, some things with the suites and the lighting." It's expected that the Hornets will make a formal announcement of their pursuit during their news conference scheduled for Tuesday.
Aug 11 - 6:28 PM


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