Charlotte Hornets

Hornets’ Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, in NBA concussion protocol faces changing role, too

Charlotte Hornets head coach James Borrego has already ruled Michael Kidd-Gilchrist out for Tuesday’s game. Kidd-Gilchrist is in the NBA’s concussion protocol.
Charlotte Hornets head coach James Borrego has already ruled Michael Kidd-Gilchrist out for Tuesday’s game. Kidd-Gilchrist is in the NBA’s concussion protocol. AP

Charlotte Hornets forward Michael Kidd-Gilchrist is in the NBA’s concussion protocol, and has been ruled out for Tuesday’s preseason exhibition against the Miami Heat at Spectrum Center.

Kidd-Gilchrist didn’t play in the second half of Sunday’s preseason loss to the Celtics in Boston. He wasn’t at practice Monday, the only player on the Hornets’ injury report.

Kidd-Gilchrist had a concussion his rookie season; he was knocked unconscious in a collision with teammate Jeff Taylor in February of 2013 during a road game against the Houston Rockets. He was carted off the court in Houston and spent the night in a hospital for observation. Kidd-Gilchrist also had two major shoulder injuries during the 2015-16 season, which limited him to seven games that season.

New Hornets coach James Borrego has changed Kidd-Gilchrist’s role this season; After playing primarily small forward as a starter most of his career, Kidd-Gilchrist is now playing primarily power forward and will likely come off the bench this season.

Shot selection

Borrego wants the Hornets taking more 3-point shots this season and particularly more corner 3s along the baseline. The NBA 3-point arc makes for a closer shot from the corners than it does from above the key.

So far, the change is taking: In the first two preseason exhibitions, the Hornets took 69 3s and 17 of those were from the corners. Some comparison: Last season, the Hornets averaged 27 3s attempted, which was 24th among 30 NBA teams.

Borrego said during training camp in Chapel Hill his goal is mid-30s in 3-point attempts, so they are right where he wants.

“It’s a work in progress,” he said. “I’ll say this: We’re much further along offensively than I thought. We’ve got a long way to go still, but we’re getting the shots we want. I still want better shots than we’re getting. .But the shot quality and shot positioning is right in the wheelhouse.”

G-League

It’s common for a G-League coach to be with the parent NBA team in the preseason to observe. But new Greensboro Swarm coach Joe Wolf took a more active role at the end of practice Monday, organizing the players who aren’t already on guaranteed contracts in some half-court drills.

A big part of Wolf’s job will be bringing along young guys on the fringe of the NBA, such as rookie J.P. Macura, on a two-way contract.

With player-development high on the list of things general manager Mitch Kupchak wants, look for the relationship between the Hornets and Swarm basketball operations to be more attuned and a higher priority.

“We’ve said from Day 1 we want to be player-development focused,” Borrego said. “We want our G-League (affiliate) to reflect what we’re doing out here. Joe Wolf has been learning our schemes, been in every meeting. He sat behind the bench (in Boston), he’s involved. He’s an extension of my staff.

“Whatever we’re doing here, I expect that to be happening in Greensboro. That’s how you have true development going on.”

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