Hornets Still Exploring Trade Options
Chris Broussard brings up the fact that the Hornets might be 7-0, but if they want to compete for a title they still have leverage and trade options to achieve the ultimate goal.
The Hornets are on the lookout for clubs that fall far short of expectations before the February trade deadline. The logic is that some of those bad or mediocre teams will be looking to dump good players with big contracts for expiring deals.
When that occurs, the Hornets hope Stojakovic's contract can help them make a splash. New Orleans is looking to trade his deal, which pays him $15.3 million this year, for a borderline All-Star type who complements Chris Paul.
The Hornets have already contacted Philadelphia about Andre Iguodala. But the Sixers, who aren't yet sure they're willing to move Iguodala, rebuffed them fairly quickly. Philadelphia's getting lots of calls about Iguodala and will have plenty of options if it decides to trade him.
New Orleans might be a viable one, with the Hornets capable of throwing in a young talent like Marcus Thornton or Marco Belinelli alongside Stojakovic.
Iguodala would seem to be a great fit alongside Paul, as long as the Hornets were able to keep some outside shooters (i.e. Belinelli).
Igoudala is extremely athletic and could certainly help with fast break and transition offense. He doesn't have the outside shot that Belinelli does, which is why I think the Hornets would need to hold on to Marco if they are able to acquire Igoudala. That will give the Hornets options at the two spot depending on the opponent, and the style of the game. Broussard also brings up other possible trade options.
Charlotte: If the Bobcats continue going south, would they be willing to move the long-term deals of either Stephen Jackson or Gerald Wallace for the payroll relief Stojakovic's deal would bring?
Houston: Would the Rockets consider moving Kevin Martin for an expiring deal and a young talent if they continue losing?
Detroit: Would the Hornets be interested in putting Richard Hamilton next to Paul?
New Orleans knows it needs to continue strengthening its roster to become a contender and also to keep Paul excited about being a Hornet long-term.
Broussard is right. If you keep winning, Chris Paul stays long-term, and winning basketball can stay in Louisiana for the foreseeable future.