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NBA Rumors: Charlotte Hornets Have "Strong Interest" In Lauri Markkanen

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Credit: Kamil Krzaczynski-USA TODAY Sports

Credit: Kamil Krzaczynski-USA TODAY Sports

The Charlotte Hornets are an exciting team with rookie sensation LaMelo Ball and some solid veterans such as Gordon Hayward. While the team was good enough to be a play-in seed, they lost in the tournament to the Domantas Sabonis-led Indiana Pacers. However, they do have a lot to look forward to in the future, and the development of their young core over the offseason should help them take a step towards making the playoffs.

Aside from internal development, there is a possibility that adding new players to the roster can help the team improve as well. A recently reported target for the Charlotte Hornets is big man Lauri Markkanen of the Chicago Bulls. Markkanen is a solid shooter for a big man.

Lauri Markkanen averaged 13.6 PPG and 4.3 RPG during the 2020-21 season, in a reduced role. However, he has shown some capability to put up bigger numbers when given more touches. That was shown by the 2018-19 season when Markkanen put up 18.7 PPG and 9.0 RPG. Lauri Markkanen is only 24, and hee still has some untapped potential.

While he has been inconsistent offensively, it is clear that Markkanen does have some talent, and perhaps another team can help him improve. On the Charlotte Hornets, Lauri Markkanen would likely be able to play off a talented playmaker like LaMelo Ball and get easy opportunities at the rim and at the 3PT line. It is definitely worth it for the Charlotte Hornets to see if they can poach him away from the Chicago Bulls in restricted free agency.

Sometimes a player simply needs a new system to look entirely different, and perhaps that is the case for Markkanen. If the Charlotte Hornets do end up acquiring him, it will certainly be a great boon to their roster and give them some more versatility. Lauri Markkanen can still be very productive and perhaps he'll get his opportunity to shine in the future.