Tom Sorensen

NBA draft can be painful, but it doesn’t have to be if Hornets follow my lead

Kentucky forward Bam Adebayo could bring a big, talented player to the Charlotte Hornets at No. 11 in the NBA draft, but is that a reach?
Kentucky forward Bam Adebayo could bring a big, talented player to the Charlotte Hornets at No. 11 in the NBA draft, but is that a reach? dlaird@charlotteobserver.com

The NBA draft can be painful. I’m still hurt that two years ago the Charlotte Hornets chose to ignore Duke’s Justise Winslow and with the ninth pick take Wisconsin’s Frank Kaminsky (Winslow went 10th to the Miami Heat).

Kaminsky has done some good work. He hits outside shots, makes some nice passes and grabs some rebounds. He hustles and is a good teammate. But I prefer Winslow’s athleticism.

At the NBA draft Thursday the Hornets will pick 11th. If they get the pick right, they’ll improve. If they don’t, they’ll get another lottery pick in 2018.

Rick Bonnell, a good friend who covers the Hornets and the NBA for the Observer, appears to be on the Bamwagon. Bam Adebayo played one season for Kentucky. He is 6-10 and 242 pounds. He’s an athlete, and he can move.

He’s interesting. But he’s not necessarily a center and he’s not necessarily a power forward, which means that he will have a lot in common with Charlotte’s other big men.

Another Kentucky player who could possibly somehow slip to 11 is Malik Monk. A 6-3 guard, Monk is athletic, can shoot from distance and go on scoring binges. If he slips to 11, he’s an excellent pick. But Monk falling to 11 would be like, I don’t know, Winslow two years ago falling to ninth.

I’ll give you my pick later in case you missed it each of the last 11 weeks.

Tom Sorensen is a retired Charlotte Observer columnist. Sign up for his newsletter, and follow him on Twitter: @tomsorensen

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