The Charlotte Hornets are looking to make a big move in free agency, so they’ve set up a meeting with Utah Jazz restricted free agent Gordon Hayward. Hayward is ideally the type of player who the Hornets would want, but the chances of Utah letting him go are very slim. Since Utah can match any offer that Hayward agrees to, the Hornets will essentially be wasting their time.
It’s definitely understood why the Hornets would want Hayward. He is a guy who can shoot the ball and can create his own shot, two areas that the Hornets weren’t very strong in. Hayward played with Hornets star Al Jefferson back in Utah, so the two already have a friendship, as well as chemistry. Hayward would immediately come in and be an offensive upgrade on the wing.
Everything that Hayward would do for Charlotte is exactly why the Jazz won’t be letting him walk. The Jazz see Hayward as one of their young pieces who they can build around. Along with Trey Burke, Hayward was the only offensive threat for Utah last year. Teams haven’t been giving offers to Hayward because they are all aware of the fact that Utah will match them, so Charlotte shouldn’t offer one either.
Hayward averaged 16.2 points, 5.2 assists and 5.1 rebounds per game. Any team could use a player like that’s production, especially the Hornets. While the Hornets should search for a marque free agent, Hayward shouldn’t be the one their targeting. The Jazz won’t let this guy go because he’s just that good. The Hornets get credit for the effort but targeting Hayward will just be a waste of time.