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#pounditMonday, May 20, 2024

1 current NBA GM emerging as frontrunner for Hornets job?

The logo of the Charlotte Hornets

Oct 20, 2017; Charlotte, NC, USA; The Charlotte Hornets logo on the doors to the locker rooms prior to the game against the Atlanta Hawks at Spectrum Center. Mandatory Credit: Jeremy Brevard-USA TODAY Sports

The Charlotte Hornets may be lasering in on their guy.

Roderick Boone of the Charlotte Observer reported this week that the New Orleans Pelicans GM Trajan Langdon is considered an early frontrunner for the opening atop the front office of the Hornets. Charlotte is in search of a new GM and president of basketball operations with Mitch Kupchak recently deciding to step down.

Boone had also mentioned Philadelphia 76ers GM Elton Brand as a frontrunner for the Hornets job along with Langdon. However, Keith Pompey of the Philly Inquirer subsequently reported on Wednesday that Brand does not intend to pursue the Charlotte position.

That would seemingly leave the 47-year-old Langdon as the lone frontrunner. He is a well-known name to basketball fans, having been a lottery pick out of Duke in 1999, spending three seasons with the Cleveland Cavaliers, and then going onto a successful career overseas where he won two EuroLeague championships.

After retiring as a player, Langdon then became a scout for the San Antonio Spurs, an assistant GM for the Brooklyn Nets, and then finally the GM of the Pelicans in 2019. He helped turn New Orleans into a bona fide playoff team after the trade of Anthony Davis. Langdon landed a franchise cornerstone (Brandon Ingram) in that trade and also swung other smart moves. Those included trades for CJ McCollum and Jonas Valanciunas, the finding of draft gems like Herbert Jones and Trey Murphy III, and the hiring of a young culture-building head coach in Willie Green.

As for the Hornets, they pose a challenging project of their own with just one winning season and zero playoff berths since 2016. Though they have some quality young keystones to work with in LaMelo Ball and Brandon Miller, a major house-cleaning may be imminent for the franchise. That would give their new front-office head (be that Langdon or someone else) a completely fresh slate to work with.

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