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Zach Lowe wrote an interesting article yesterday about the current state of this franchise: http://grantland.com/the-triangle/good-charlotte-the-hornets-and-the-sliding-scale-of-nba-mediocrity/

He basically laid out the teeter-totter that the franchise is currently on. If they lose Al Jefferson and/or Nic Batum to free agency this offseason, they are right back where they were when Jordan first bought this team. Winning is very likely the only way to keep them. This is probably going to be a desperate team this year.

He also mentioned how Lin will be leading a second unit suddenly loaded up with shooters on a roster than badly needed shooting last season. Let's take a look:

PG Kemba Walker/Jeremy Lin/Brian Roberts
SG Nicolas Batum/Jeremy Lamb/Troy Daniels
SF Michael Kidd-Gilchrist/Marvin Williams/P.J. Hairston
PF Cody Zeller/Tyler Hansbrough/Frank Kaminsky
C Al Jefferson/Spencer Hawes

That's some streaky shooting. Neither Hawes nor Lamb nor Marvin has really shown that they can consistently make shots in competitive games against good teams. The most playoff proven shooter I see on that roster, sadly, is Troy Daniels. They better hope Kaminsky gives them what they hoped they were going to get out of Vonleh and more.
 

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I just can't see saying no to a likely lottery pick in next year's Nets pick and a wildcard pick - the Memphis pick that won't be conveyed before 2019, when Gasol and Randolph will be 34 and 37, respectively - plus a pair of mid-firsts in order to take Frank when they could have easily gotten Boston to toss in a lite version of Frank in Kelly Olynyk. Not that I don't like Winslow, I think he's a good fit for where the NBA is heading (guards multiple positions and hits 3s), but as I Boston fan I'm actually a bit relieved that deal didn't go down.
 

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as I Boston fan I'm actually a bit relieved that deal didn't go down.
But you learned that Ainge had it in him to make that move. Scary stuff.
 

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But you learned that Ainge had it in him to make that move. Scary stuff.
I mean.....if Winslow becomes a more athletic Draymond Green then he's well worth it. However, there's also the chance he's just Beefy Corey Brewer, which makes me nervous. Ainge has been better than most in the draft, so I'll keep an open mind no matter what he does, but that's a big bet on a middle-of-the-lottery rookie.
 

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that's a big bet on a middle-of-the-lottery rookie.
This is the key. It really doesn't matter how good he is. He was giving a move-into-the-top-4 package in a pretty decent draft for the #9 pick.
 

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Batum isn't the most durable player. They're one rolled ankle away from Jeremy Lamb starting.
 
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