Injuries have left the Charlotte Hornets shorthanded at the perimeter positions this preseason. Quite the opposite among the big men.
Coach Steve Clifford likes what he’s seen from Johnny O’Bryant, and has been looking for ways to use him more in the team’s first four preseason exhibitions. But there are four big men in front of O’Bryant in Dwight Howard, Cody Zeller, Marvin Williams and Frank Kaminsky. So O’Bryant, a 6-9 player out of LSU, waits his turn.
In 22 minutes against the Boston Celtics Wednesday, O’Bryant scored 11 points on 4-of-9 shooting and grabbed six rebounds. Clifford has talked frankly with O’Bryant about why he doesn’t play more, and O’Bryant understands.
“Whenever my name is called, I’ll be ready. You have guys like Frank and Marv, who’ve been with the Hornets organization for a while and know what they’re doing,” said O’Bryant, entering his third NBA season. “I think when I get in, there’s no fall-off.”
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O’Bryant said it has helped that Clifford is transparent with him about the situation.
“One thing I like about coach is he’s straight forward,” O’Bryant said. “I’m around great players and I just have to wait my turn.”
Bonnell: 704-358-5129: @rick_bonnell