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New Orleans Hornets Boy, the Hornets are sure doing much better in their new town (sorry, still a little bitter).  Their GM this year is Jim Kosmecki who selects:

Nick Collison, PF, 6'9", Kansas

The Hornets: On the Brink of the East's Elite

2002-2003 At a Glance

There was a considerable "buzz" (no pun intended) with the team newly relocated in New Orleans that sparked very high hopes going into the 2002 season. Some had even chosen the Hornets as one of the top contenders in the East. They had the ingredients that championships are made of right? They had excellent if not spectacular play at the point guard position with Baron Davis. They had a great scorer on the wing in Jamal Mashburn. They had an excellent shooter from the perimeter in David Wesley. They had very good interior defense with P.J. Brown at Power Forward and Elden Campbell at Center. They had acquired Courtney Alexander in a trade, and he was to provide a athletic scoring option on the break with Davis and Mashburn, possibly moving Wesley to a swing guard type of role off the bench. Jamaal Magloire was improving as a inside presence. They re-acquired George Lynch for a stabilizing force in the locker room as well as on the floor, while providing veteran leadership on the court. If there was any weakness it was going to be depth Wouldn't you know it. The injury bug ravaged through the roster with reckless abandon. Baron Davis played in 50 games, David Wesley missed 9, Courtney Alexander played in 66, Elden Campbell played in 41 out of a possible 55 games. The team played ok for the 1st part of the season but felt it was time to make a change in the lineup with Baron Davis out indefinitely with a knee problem. Traded Elden Campbell for Kenny Anderson. The team ended strong and made the playoffs. While pushing the 76ers to six games before being eliminated, it was clear this team was a couple players away from making a big splash in the Eastern Conference. Unfortunately it was decide that Paul Silas wasn't the man to take the team where it needed to go so he was terminated. After a brief flirtation with Mike Fratello, it was decided that Tim Floyd would be the man to take the Hornets to the promised land.

Player Analysis

Kenny Anderson was expected to be a fill-in for Davis then go to the bench and spell him. Didn't score much but for the amount of minutes he played he distributed the ball well. Is set to become a Free Agent and his $9 M. contract will come off the books. Questions on whether he'll be back or not.

Jamaal Magloire had a breakout season. Ten points and nine rebounds a game on average. He was a solid presence at the defensive end of the court as well, evidenced by his block and a half average. The team holds a option on Magloire's contract so expect him to be back.

P.J. Brown had his normal lunch-pail type season. Double figures in points and rebounds while playing very solid defense on the game's toughest power forwards. However, Brown is a Free Agent and is expected to bolt, possibly to the Lakers. That would be a huge blow to the defensive core of this team.

Jamal Mashburn finally stayed healthy and put up the numbers everyone knew he could. 22 ppg. , 6 rebs., and 5 1/2 assists, were all impressive numbers for the small-forward. Along assuming the go-to-guy role, Mashburn also handled most of the ball handling chores while Davis was out.

David Wesley played very solid but was noticeably hindered by having too much on his plate, when Davis' knee caused him too miss time. Scored around 17 ppg. But shooting % was 43%.

Baron Davis when healthy is a top 5 PG, capable of triple doubles on any given night. However more often than not, he has been injured. Whether his back or knee or whatever, he hasn't been able to blossom into the superstar he's destined to be. He put up respectable numbers in the regular season but it was in the playoffs, when he was starting to heal, that he busted out and let people know how good he was.

Courtney Alexander didn't have the impact as anticipated. Played well in spurts but missed too much time with nagging injuries to ever get real comfortable with his new team. Much will be expected of the 3rd year swingman. He has a team option on his contract as well for the upcoming year, but he will be back.

George Lynch came off the bench to really help the defense out. Played out of position on the defensive end a lot, guarding many shooting guards. However, he held his own and showed surprising passing ability on the offensive end. He played his normal mistake free game and really helped on the boards.

Robert Traylor became a fan favorite. Combining monster dunks with soft touch around the rim. While he still needs to work on his conditioning, he has proved to be a solid role player.

Stacey Augmon playing time was somewhat limited but he still contributed his long arms on defense, applying his "Plastic Man" reputation whenever possible. Only problem is that he's really not a threat to score.

Bryce Drew spent most of the year on the injured list. When healthy he provides a great perimeter threat and solid direction at the point. He is somewhat of a liability on defense though.

Robert Pack was signed to multiple 10 day contracts towards the end of the season and played very well. Needed for the depth, the PG infused the team with some needed energy on both ends of the floor.

Jerome Moiso brought energy when he played, but was mostly inconsistent and turnover prone. However in the playoffs he proved that he can be atough matchup and can produce when his number is called.

Kirk Haston had a wasted year. Unable to play in all but 12 games, Haston has a lot to prove to overcome the "Bust" label. He does have solid skills and there is a reason the Hornets liked him enough to draft him in the 1st round. The team has an option on the last year Moiso's contract, and with the way he finished, Jerome will most likely be back.

No  Player                  Pos  Ht  Wt    B-day   College               Exp
 1  Baron Davis ...........  G  6-3  223  4/13/79  UCLA'01                4 
 2  Stacey Augmon .........  F  6-8  213   8/1/68  UNLV'91               12 
 4  David Wesley ..........  G  6-1  203 11/14/70  Baylor'92             10 
 6  Jerome Moiso ..........  F  6-10 232  6/15/78  UCLA'02                3 
 7  Kenny Anderson ........  G  6-1  168  10/9/70  Georgia Tech'93       12 
 9  George Lynch ..........  F  6-8  235   9/3/70  UNC'93                10 
14  Robert Pack ...........  G  6-2  190   2/3/69  USC'91                12 
17  Bryce Drew ............  G  6-3  184  9/21/74  Valparaiso'98          5 
21  Jamaal Magloire ....... F-C 6-11 259  5/21/78  Kentucky'00            3 
24  Jamal Mashburn ........  F  6-8  247 11/29/72  Kentucky'94           10 
32  Courtney Alexander ....  G  6-5  205  4/27/77  Fresno State'00        3 
34  Robert Traylor ........  F  6-8  284   2/1/77  Michigan'99            5 
35  Kirk Haston ...........  F  6-9  242  3/10/79  Indiana'01             2 
42  P.J. Brown ............  F  6-11 239 10/14/69  Louisiana Tech'92     10 

Head Coach: Tim Floyd (Louisiana Tech'77)
Assistants: Jeff Bower 
Trainer:    Terry Kofler (Xavier'76)

Money Situation

With the cap at $40 million, the Hornets are in pretty good shape. The team's payroll is at $45.2 Million with the big name free agents being Brown and Anderson. The team has their mid-level exception that they may want to use to add depth across the board.

Player             2002-03 salary  Total contract Signed through 
Kenny Anderson     $9,185,000 7-yr; 50.0M 2002-03 
Jamal Mashburn     $7,750,000 6-yr; 53.5M 2004-05 (p) 
PJ Brown           $7,044,800 7-yr; 36.0M 2002-03 
Baron Davis        $3,942,922 6-yr; 85.0M 2008-09 
David Wesley       $3,600,000 9-yr; 31.40M 2005-06 
George Lynch       $2,600,000 6-yr; 15.0M 2004-05 
Stacey Augmon      $2,400,000 3-yr; 7.20M 2003-04 
Jerome Moiso       $1,681,200 3-yr; 4.71M 2002-03 
Courtney Alexander $1,517,280 4-yr; 6.42M 2002-03 (t) 
Bryce Drew         $1,300,000 3-yr; 3.9M 2003-04 
Kirk Haston        $1,271,400 4-yr; 5.90M 2003-04 (t) 
Jamaal Magloire    $1,121,280 4-yr; 4.87M 2002-03 (t) 
Robert Traylor       $750,000 2-yr; 1.50M 2003-04 
Robert Pack        $1,030,000 1-yr; 1.03M 2002-03 
Total $45,193,882 

Team Needs

Franchise Player:

  • Baron Davis G

Team Nucleus:

  • Courtney Alexander G
  • Stacey Augmon F
  • Bryce Drew G
  • Kirk Haston F
  • George Lynch F
  • Jamaal Magloire C
  • Jamal Mashburn F
  • Robert Traylor F
  • David Wesley G

Free Agents:

  • Kenny Anderson G
  • P.J. Brown F
  • Jerome Moiso F
  • Robert Pack G


Jerome Moiso's performance in the playoffs should earn him a few extra greenbacks. He's far from consistent, but he probably flashed just enough potential to peak some interest. PJ Brown will be 34 and is a free agent. The team will have to decide how many years they want to commit to him. Jamaal Magloire has turned into a real steal and one of the top young centers in the league. The team will probably look for a big man with their first round pick and will have to decide what to do with PJ and Moiso in free agency.

Position Needs:

  • PF, C, SG, PG

Players Considered for this pick (Reason Not Chosen):

Actual Pick

With the #18 Pick in the 2003 NBA Draft, the New Orleans Hornets select:

Nick Collison, PF, 6'9", Kansas

With the impending loss of P.J. Brown, the Hornets are looking to add size in the frontcourt. The 6-10/255 lb. Collison should provide that. While reports are good and bad about Collison's workouts, and some question his strength, it's hard to argue with the production he has put up playing for a perennial Top-10 Division 1 school. No, he probably doesn't have the high potential that some of the other more physically gifted players have, but Collison is ready to play now and should be an immediate contributor if not a starter. Couple that with his performance in the Final Four this year and Tim Floyd is ecstatic to get Collison. He's a player that rebounds well; scores with his back to the basket and can step out and hit the 15 footer with regularity. He can probably play some center in a small lineup. He should be part of a formidable tandem inside with Jamaal Magloire. Being picked this late because of the influx of European prospects, this selection could be a real steal this late in Round 1.