The Charlotte Bobcats are reportedly looking to trade for a swingman after seeing small forwards Michael Kidd-Gilchrist and Jeff Taylor go down with injuries. According to a league source, the Michael Jordan-owned franchise is targeting Orlando Magic swingman Aaron Afflalo, who is currently having a breakout season.
The Bobcats are determined to make it in the playoffs a year before they rebranded the franchise to Charlotte Hornets. The Cats' are currently sitting in the sixth place in the Eastern Conference standing, boasting a 14-15 record in the first season under head coach Steve Clifford.
Grantland wirter Zach Lowe first broke the news that the Bobcats are looking for a swingman on the trading floor. Kidd-Gilchrist will miss at least four more weeks with a broken hand while Taylor will sit out for the remainder of the season due to a ruptured Achilles.
"If I had a wing I wanted to flip for future assets/picks, I'd be on the phone to Charlotte today," Lowe posted on his Twitter account.
Bobcats Trading For Afflalo
Though the Bobcats don't have many exciting young talents on their roster other than star point guard Kemba Walker, the franchise actually has the first-round picks from the Portland Trail Blazers and the Detroit Pistons in next year's draft.
"The Bobcats don't have many expendable young prospects--unless one is interested in the raw, 22-year-old big man Bismack Biyombo--but they do own 2014 first-round Draft picks from the Portland Trail Blazers and Detroit Pistons. While neither pick figures to be in the lottery, the depth of the 2014 Draft class makes mid-to-late first-rounders even more valuable than usual," SB Nation writer Evan Dunlap stated.
Dunlap added that the Magic could shop Afflalo in exchange for more assets, even though such move would compromise their short-term goal. Afflalo has been the leading scorer of the young Magic squad as he averaged 21.8 points, 4.6 rebounds and 3.9 assists this season.
Without a doubt, the Bobcats will benefit from Afflalo's ability to create his own shots and knock down long range jumpers. The core of Walker, Gerald Henderson, Al Jefferson, and Afflalo is solid enough for the 'Cats to book their second playoff appearance in franchise history.
"If they're interested in adding to their collection of assets at the expense of wins in the short-term, the Orlando Magic could potentially offer Arron Afflalo to Charlotte in a trade package for such an asset. The veteran swingman ranks 10th in the NBA in scoring, posting 21.8 points per game to go with 4.6 rebounds and 3.9 assists," Dunlap added.
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