by Michael Lowrey
Rick Bonnell of the Charlotte Observer writes that:
Barring a last-minute change of thinking, the Charlotte Hornets do not intend to exercise their contract option on shooting guard-small forward P.J. Hairston, an NBA source said Monday.
Hairston, who is currently starting for the Hornets, would make about $1.25 million for the 2016-17 season under the rookie scale for first-round picks. Under the collective bargaining agreement, rookies drafted in the first round are guaranteed two seasons, then the team has two one-season options before a player would become a restricted free agent.
The Hornets have until midnight Monday to exercise options, as they did with power forward Cody Zeller Monday afternoon. If Hairston’s option isn’t exercised, he would be an unrestricted free agent in July.
It’s pretty bad if a first-round draft pick can’t even justify a cheap (by NBA standards) extension. But this is the Bobcats/Hornets we are talking about, and drafting isn’t something they’ve ever done well.