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Free Agency: It’s not too late

Published: December 13, 2011

I don’t know if I believe the NBA wants to trade Chris Paul at this point.   The demands seem a bit ridiculous, really.  However, what I do know is a decision needs to be made in the NBA’s front office:  unleash Demps to start signing Free Agents to put around Paul, or just take one the lesser offers and blow everything up in a fire sale.  I wanted to talk about the former.  Building a team around Paul, with trades out of the picture.

The Hornets have around $13.8 million in cap space to tear through, and despite all the quality free agents seemingly already snatched up, there are still valuable pieces out there.  Pieces, that even without David West, the Hornets could turn into a solid team.  So here’s what I want the Hornets to do if Paul is sticking around:

Offer Carl Landry 3 years, $13.5 million.(starts at 4)

Landry has been looking for more money than that, but there aren’t a lot of suitors left out there that can offer much – or that have a glaring need for an undersized, scoring Power Forward who can’t rebound.  The Hornets, on the other hand, do need that.

Offer Samuel Dalembert 2-years, $15 million(starts at 7) with a player option for the second year.

Centers command more money.  Hell, Kwame Brown just got a 1 year, 7 million dollar deal. Combine him with Okafor and Landry and the Hornets already have a trio of big men that are already better than last years  Okafor-Landry-Gray frontline from the playoffs.

Offer Reggie Williams 4 years, 13 million.(starts at 2.8)

With the unexpected news that the Warriors cut Williams in the hope of making the Deandre Jordan offer too big for the Clips to match, the Hornets should pounce.  Williams is better than Belinelli and much better than Green, and even if the Hornets do blow things up, you have to have a veteran or two on the squad, and this isn’t a massive contract.  Oh, and if Reggie wants it, give him an out after 2 years.

Start strewing minimum contract offers across the league veterans:

I’m looking at Craig Smith(PF), Michael Redd(SG, McGrady took it!), Earl Clark(PF), Ben Uzoh(PG), Krylyo Fesenko(C), Jason Smith(PF) and Troy Murphy(C).  See what sticks.  I’m sure Willie Green will get one too, but I’m not sure I’m excited about that.

Best case, we could see a lineup of:

  • C: Okafor/Dalembert/Fesenko
  • PF: Landry/Craig Smith/Earl Clark
  • SF: Ariza/Pondexter
  • SG: Reg Williams/Belinelli/Redd
  • PG: Paul/Jack/Uzoh

If Paul comes back and plays hard, does anyone refute that that team couldn’t push for a lower seed in the West?  And that team would be just as easy to dismantle as the current one is, should Paul walk out that door.


  1. StefanC

    December 13, 2011 at 9:39 pm

    A decision needs to be made now. Personally, I don’t mind trying to compete.

  2. Simon

    December 13, 2011 at 9:45 pm

    With cp we’re not gonna be lottery so may as well go get some decent players..

  3. QueenBee

    December 13, 2011 at 9:45 pm

    I think it would be great if Landry came back. Getting Dalembert would be cool too.

  4. Jo D

    December 13, 2011 at 9:54 pm

    I would like Redd at vet min. Low risk. Plus I think he still has some gas in the tank. Could be an ideal 6th man on a good team.
    But why no offer sheet on Afflalo?
    He might be the best “Monty Mold” left available on the market.
    I would love having Jason Smith back. Plays with great energy and hustle. Still has some upside as well.

    • PP3istheMVP

      December 13, 2011 at 9:58 pm

      I think the reason for no Afflalo is because its believed the Nuggets will match any offer given to him.

      • Jo D

        December 13, 2011 at 10:04 pm

        Not necessarily, they just traded for Rudy and Brewer.
        And this goes without saying, but it doesn’t hurt to try. Worst case scenario…. They match….
        Best case scenario… We get the most well rounded player left on market…

    • Ryan Schwan

      December 14, 2011 at 8:43 am

      I love Afflalo – but I think you’d have to decide which you want more:

      Dalembert + Williams or
      Afflalo + Fesenko/Murphy

      Considering the Nuggets could still match, I’d prefer to go after the first pair.

      • J

        December 14, 2011 at 9:36 am

        I had Nick Young as the frist choice at SG but with Affalo you’ve a defender and a 3pt shooter

      • Jo D

        December 14, 2011 at 5:20 pm

        You also must consider the market movement. the best player in that scenario is AA. The new rule is 3 days to match. No longer a week. And these players aren’t exactly getting scooped up at record pace… The market has slowed a bit. Not to mention we have the cap space(pre cp3 trade) to offer Sam, williams, and AA all comparable contracts… But my guess is that NO isn’t even on Sammys radar given his age and Meks presence…

      • Jo D

        December 14, 2011 at 5:40 pm

        Williams to Charlotte… Lol
        Afflalo Afflalo Afflalo!

  5. PP3istheMVP

    December 13, 2011 at 9:56 pm

    Dalembert would be a great pickup. I realllly want Landry back!

  6. Reggie

    December 13, 2011 at 10:08 pm

    We can also sign a guy who i think nobody has been mentioning Nick Young who was pretty solid last year Avg 17.4 PPG

    • NOS-3RD GEN

      December 14, 2011 at 3:32 am

      I do agree with you on that but they might not want him because he show no value in defense. I know sucks tho. most likely they don’t get him b/c he doesn’t fit monty’s system. Prime EX. Marcus Thornton enough said!!

    • Ryan Schwan

      December 14, 2011 at 8:41 am

      He’s a restricted Free Agent – so you’d have to throw money in the $8-9 million a year to have a chance to pry him away from Washington. I don’t think he’s worth that – and it’s not because of his defense.

      It’s because he takes 17 shots to get 17 points – which is awful – and is one of the worst rebounders and passers in basketball. I say it all the time, but I don’t mind repeating myself:

      To contend, you have to have players who are good at multiple things.

  7. Mark

    December 13, 2011 at 10:15 pm

    Vet min on Redd or Murphy? Damn, they must’ve fallen off. They were putting up numbers (when not injured heh) only a few years back.

    I would say as long as we put some moves I’ll be happy, but with the administration the way it is, I’d be surprised if we could really get any talent.

  8. nicks65

    December 13, 2011 at 11:02 pm

    As a TU student, I would love to see Uzoh get an offer. Right now the waiting is the hardest most awful part.

    I just want some stability to return to my franchise!

  9. Tyler

    December 14, 2011 at 1:48 am

    Re-sign Carl Landry, Jason Smith and Willie Green.

  10. NOS-3RD GEN

    December 14, 2011 at 4:08 am

    Main players they should target should be Carl Landry= A WEST replacement, Reggie Williams =great a those 3 pointers, and can maybe show more of a def effort. To me should start at the 2 for height reasons, Alexis Ajinca = very tall can replace A.G.34, and can be a good backup for our starting Center,Yi Jianlian= 7-0 ft can knock down 3pts, very tall, can play back-up for Landry and fits what the hornets are trying to do this year which is get taller, i can’t believe I’m saying this person but Andrei Kirilenko= He have everything Monty is looking for: good height for a “F,” very defensive, can at least put up 10 ppg on the bench, and at that point in his career where nobody wants him. I say before he decides to move back to Russia the hornets should give him the Vet min., and besides I rather have him be Ariza’s back-up than Q-Pon.

    Hornets Roster w/CP3 2011-2012
    PG-CP3, Jarret Jack, D-L All-Star
    SG-R.Williams, Marco Belinelli, D-L all-star
    SF-T.Ariza, AK47, Q-Pon
    PF-C.L.24, YI aka Yao Ming jr, Lance Thomas
    C- Big Oak,Alexis Ajinca, Butch whatever his name is

  11. Hornetsfan!!

    December 14, 2011 at 4:20 am

    wow! thanks for that post, some really good ideas; we need an SG, and a reg williams/belinelli combination could work well! dalembert would be a good addition, but honestly, i dont think we’ll be lucky enough to get Landry(my favourite player :p) for that cheap. Because two seasons ago in sacramento when he started for them, he averaged around 18 ppg and 6.5 rebounds.. But in saying that. he might come to the hornets where he could not only be a starter but also the go to option!! therefore, he may take a small pay cut to get that role 😀 hope that this actually happens

  12. J

    December 14, 2011 at 7:56 am

    If theres a 3 team trade with the Hornets-Lakers-T-Wolves

    The Hornets get Pau Gasol (Lakers),2012 1st rd pick via Mavs and Wayne Ellington,Wesley Johnson,Anthony Randolph and Darko Millicic

    The Lakers get CP3

    The T-wolves get Okafor,Pondexter,Steve Blake and Devin Ebanks

    Then Sign Dalenbert,Landry,Young,Reggie Williams or Stuckey at PG,Shawne Williams and Alexis Ajinca

    SF:Ariza-Shawne Williams-Wes Johnson
    PG:Reggie Williams or Rodney Stuckey-Jack

    • Jo D

      December 14, 2011 at 5:29 pm

      In the words of CP3… WoW!..
      This is not only highly improbable, but also highly illogical.
      First off… Minnesota gets no benefit from this trade… None!
      Secondly, no way we get that haul of free agents…
      Third and lastly… The fact that you have REGGIE WILLIAMS (a score first sg) and combo guard Stuckey playing POINT totally discredits anything you have to say when you still have Jarret Jack.
      Basically you have a shoot first 2 guard starting at point, a shoot first combo at back up, and the best and only true point guard on the team as THIRD STRING!!!
      I did get a good laugh tho, thanks!

  13. J

    December 14, 2011 at 9:39 am

    Do anyone know how to do the answer code on the Hornets i been trying to join there for days?

    • Joe Gerrity

      December 14, 2011 at 10:06 am

      answer code??? The strong of numbers/simple math problem?

      Is that what you mean? I can probably help you get on.

  14. J

    December 14, 2011 at 10:12 am

    yeah help me out

  15. Taquito

    December 14, 2011 at 10:13 am

    Uzoh/Williams/Clark i like a lot, id love to see Landry back too because of his ability to score, Craig Smith is a monolith so he would bring inside strength and i wouldnt mind giving Redd a try, hes a shooter so he doesnt need athleticism to score. I also wouldnt mind looking at some DLeague talent, Millsap’s little brother, Elijah and Jarrid Famous are killing it i dont know how the whole dleague works, can teams sign any player or only the ones that play for the affiliated team?

    • Ryan Schwan

      December 14, 2011 at 3:50 pm

      Unless the player was drafted by a team that assigns them to the D-League, you may sign anyone there.

  16. J

    December 14, 2011 at 10:29 am

    Houston could be the thrid team but this time they want Gasol and Okafor.I see us getting the same thing Martin,Scola,Terrence Williams,Jordan Hill,Johnny Flynn and draft Picks

    • Jo D

      December 14, 2011 at 5:36 pm

      I’m ok with this but swap a couple of youngsters for budinger and patterson

  17. Lucas Ottoni

    December 14, 2011 at 10:39 am

    Hornets needs trade Chris Paul immediately!

  18. juan cruz

    December 14, 2011 at 10:59 am

    Love the posts. But why would anybody take the vet min. in NO rather than take it with Mia, Bos, Chi, LA, or Dal.

    • Jason Calmes

      December 14, 2011 at 11:37 am

      There are only 75 of those jobs and more than 75 people want them (and many have them). Someone will get those jobs, for sure, but some won’t. Assuming people will take $1m in a market that isn’t one of those 5 rather than no money, someone will sign with a 6th team. Pigeonhole principle.


  19. J

    December 14, 2011 at 11:05 am

    Hornets-Lakers-Hawks trade just a thought might not happen

    Hornets get Horford,Josh Smith,Jeff Teague and draft picks

    Hawks get Gasol and Okafor

    Lakers get CP3

    • Jo D

      December 14, 2011 at 5:32 pm

      Lateral move for Hawks, doesn’t make them better.
      Becoming better is the goal when taking back years of big salary

  20. NOS-3RD GEN

    December 14, 2011 at 11:15 am

    overall what the hornets need is a OWNER!!!

  21. Blake berger

    December 14, 2011 at 11:29 am

    If Chris paul doesn’t get traded and plays for us this season, do u think he will just walk and screw us over after this season or try to make it work here?

    • Jason Calmes

      December 14, 2011 at 11:40 am

      That is a decision to be made by the currently unknown market, but there will be a strong look around the league, avoiding hyperbole.

    • PP3istheMVP

      December 14, 2011 at 4:07 pm

      I think itll depend on whether or not we compete this season. I believe if we kept him and resigned Landry along with other pieces to help the bench we could have a better team than last season. Gut feeling is he will walk after next season unfortunately though

  22. babyboi5

    December 14, 2011 at 5:01 pm

    The Hornets organization and fans have suffered through a long week. Rapidly, the NBA season is approaching. It’s unfortunate that we all have to bear witness to this CHRIS PAUL DRAMA, but at the end of the day, there are games that are to be played.

    It doesn’t look like Chris Paul is going to be traded anytime soon. That doesn’t mean this organization has to continue to sit still and not make any other moves. The other 29 teams will NOT FEEL SORRY FOR US so I need management, specifically Dell Demps, to start making some moves and make this team better.

    What is there to lose? Almost everyone will pick us to be the worst team in the league so we just need to give it our all and play. Demps, assemble a team that can compete. Bring in talent to show Hornets fans that despite what is currently going on, this organization is committed to making this a productive and inspired season.

    Who knows-if we win and @ least show some fight, that 1% chance of Chris Paul staying might increase as the season progress. The TIME IS NOW!!! Let’s get the season started!!!

  23. Jo D

    December 14, 2011 at 6:01 pm

    Chris paul to clippers… Done deal
    We send 2 futures 2nds as well

    We get gordon, kaman, aminu, and wolves pick

    • Trey

      December 14, 2011 at 6:11 pm

      Do you know if were shedding Okafors contract too?

      • ur_gmas_daughter

        December 14, 2011 at 6:13 pm

        Okafor is not included in the deal according to Marc Stein

      • Jo D

        December 14, 2011 at 6:14 pm

        We just ship out paul with two 2nd round picks
        But Mek is next in line to be traded, with Ariza following

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