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tage of making
22-08-2018 03:51 AM
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tage of making


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Mitch Kupchak is confident Michael Jordan’s Hornets will become an NBA playoff team again soon Youth Robert Griffin III Jersey , possibly even next season.

But just how he intends to help Charlotte get there remains unclear – for now.

The Hornets new general manager and president of basketball operations said during his introductory news conference Tuesday this is a job he coveted. But the 63-year-old Kupchak was vague when it came to pressing questions surrounding the futures of the franchise’s top player Kemba Walker, eight-time All-Star center Dwight Howard and coach Steve Clifford – as well as whether the team needs to undergo a complete rebuilding process.

”I’m limited in my knowledge other than what I have seen on TV and learned in the last 48 hours,” said Kupchak, who accepted the job on Sunday. No details have been released about the terms of his contract.

He helped the Los Angeles Lakers win seven NBA titles and has spent 30 years as a front office executive, including 17 as the Lakers’ general manager.

He hopes to build a winner in Charlotte too – with Jordan’s help.

”I don’t know why I wouldn’t seek out his opinion,” said Kupchak, adding that Jordan is arguably the greatest player ever to play the game.

Kupchak said Jordan is still very passionate about not only the NBA game, but the college game as well – and keeps up on the talent.

”I hope that most of the time we are on the same page and there may be a couple of times we are not,” Kupchak said. ”He may look at me and say, `You know Mitch, we don’t see eye-to-eye on this but you do what is best.’ Or he maybe he will look at me and say, `Mitch we don’t see eye-to-eye on this one but this is my decision.’ And that is his right as an owner.”

In Los Angeles, Kupchak inherited a roster from Jerry West where he acknowledged ”the cupboards were full.”

Behind Kobe Bryant and Shaquille O’Neal Eagles Josh Sweat Jersey , the Lakers became a dynasty.

Things are little different in Charlotte, which lacks the glitz of a big market like Los Angeles, the talent of a Golden State and the history of franchise like Boston.

Kupchak inherits a team with 10 players under contract next season leaving the Hornets close the luxury tax threshold – making turning over the roster a little difficult.

Charlotte’s most tradable commodity is Walker, who has played in the last two All-Star games and is making just $12 million a year with one season left on his contract before becoming a free agent.

Walker is the franchise’s all-time leading scorer, but he’s also stated that he would prefer to win playoff games rather than go through a rebuilding process.

”I like a player that doesn’t want to be somewhere where they’re going to lose,” Kupchak said. ” … I know he’s had an All-Star year. It’s tough to answer the question with any certainty.”

He said the same goes for the 32-year-old Howard, who rebounded from two lackluster seasons in Houston and Atlanta with a solid campaign this season for the Hornets averaging 16.7 points, 12.4 rebound and 1.6 blocks in 80 games played.

Howard played for Kupchak in Los Angeles when he was GM there, and Kupchak said he didn’t want the big man to leave for Houston as a free agent.

He said he’s watched Howard play recently and likes what he’s seen.

”He is as lively and energetic as I have seen him play in years and years and years,” Kupchak said. ”I know next year is the last year of his deal so there is some uncertainty with some of the players going forward.”

There is also uncertainty surrounding Clifford’s future.

Charlotte has made the playoffs twice in five seasons under Clifford, but has never advanced out of the first round. Clifford missed a large portion of this past season dealing with headaches related to sleep deprivation.

Clifford spent one season with the Lakers and Kupchak felt at that time he had head coaching potential.

But when asked directly about Clifford’s future with the Hornets, Kupchak struck a popular refrain, saying he just got the job two days ago Kyle Long Jersey Youth , ”so in all fairness I have not had the time” to assess.

As for whether the Hornets need to rebuild, Kupchak said, ”I don’t know if that is the right word or not. I think our actions in the next three months might answer that question.”

鈥?The Latest on the NFL draft (all times local):10:25 p.m.South Carolina State linebacker Darius Leonard was the first of six lower-division players taken on the second day of the draft after an all-FBS first round.Leonard went to Indianapolis with the fourth pick of the second round, the 36th overall. South Carolina State is an FCS school.Philadelphia traded up to get the next FCS pick, tight end Dallas Goedert of South Dakota State at 49th overall.The Eagles ended up a spot ahead of the Dallas Cowboys, who are waiting for word from Jason Witten on whether the 15-year tight end will retire to join ESPN’s crew for “Monday Night Football.” The network reported that Witten planned to retire, but Cowboys owner Jerry Jones said the 10-time Pro Bowler hadn’t made a decision.The other second-round pick for lower-division teams was nose tackle P.J. Hall from Sam Houston State of FCS. Hall went to Oakland, as did the first pick in the third round, Brandon Parker of FCS North Carolina A&T. Parker was taken 65th overall.The last two choices were both from Division II schools: defensive tackle Nathan Shepherd from Fort Hays State to the New York Jets at No. 72 overall, and offensive lineman Alex Cappa of Humboldt State to Tampa Bay with the 94th pick. Shepherd is Canadian.10 p.m.The last pick of the second day of the draft was the first player taken from Clemson.The Kansas Chiefs selected Clemson linebacker Dorian O’Daniel with pick No. 100 overall. The Tigers are coming off their third straight College Football Playoff appearance and have been pouring players into the NFL in recent years.The dearth of Tigers in this year’s draft is good news for Clemson. The Tigers have three defensive linemen, including tackle Christian Wilkins, who are possible first- and second-round draft picks and all decided to return to school for another season.Alabama, Georgia and Ohio State all have had five players taken through three rounds.9:45 p.m.LSU outside linebacker and pass rusher Arden Key was considered a possibly top-10 pick after his sophomore season.But last year was a dud , derailed by a shoulder injury and a long time away from the program during the spring because of a marijuana issue.Key slid all the way to the third round and was taken with pick No. 87 by the Oakland Raiders.A second UCF player was taken in the draft when receiver Tre’quan Smith was taken by the New Orleans Saints at 91. Deep into the third round, UCF star Shaquem Griffin, the linebacker missing his left hand, was still waiting to be selected.9:30 p.m.Orlando Brown Jr. is following his late father into the NFL 鈥?with the same franchise, no less.The former Oklahoma standout was taken in the middle of the third round by the Baltimore Ravens with the 83rd overall pick of the NFL draft.Brown Jr. was projected as a first or second-round pick before a poor showing at the combine. His 14 reps at 225 pounds on the bench press were the fewest of any lineman who lifted at the draft. He also had a slow time in the 40-yard dash.The younger Brown grew up around NFL teams after his dad played more than a decade in the league, starting with the Cleveland Browns before the franchise moved to Baltimore and became the Ravens.Known as “Zeus” at 6-foot-7 and 360 pounds, the elder Brown died of a diabetic condition in 2011 at the age of 40. He returned to Cleveland with the Browns in 1999 before three years out of the game after being partially blinded when hit in the eye by a penalty flag.The elder Brown sued the NFL for $200 million, saying the flag incident prematurely ended his career. He settled the lawsuit, came back with Baltimore in 2003 and played three more seasons.Brown Jr. certainly has his dad’s size. He’s one of the biggest players in the draft at 6-8, 360 pounds.9:20 p.m.With a flurry of trades, New England Patriots coach Bill Belichick accomplished what may have been one of his prime objectives in the NFL draft: Making it impossible for his critics to judge the trade that sent Jimmy Garoppolo to the San Francisco 49ers.Garoppolo had been the heir apparent to five-time Super Bowl champion Tom Brady at quarterback. But with Brady playing at MVP level again last season at the age of 40, Belichick shipped Garoppolo off to San Francisco midseason for a second-round draft pick, which turned out to be No. 43 overall.Belichick wheeled that pick to Detroit for Nos. 51 and 117. Then he sent the No. 51 pick to Chicago for No. 105 and a second-rounder next year. And he sent the Patriots’ own pick in the second round this year Kyle Lauletta Jersey Giants , No. 63, along with the No. 117 to Tampa Bay for the 56th overall pick, which they used to select Florida cornerback Duke Dawson.Asked if the dealing had the added advantage of making it difficult to pin any one player as the guy they got for Garoppolo, director of player personnel Nick Caserio said, “You guys will parse that tomorrow. That’s not our job.”9:15 p.m.New Redskins running back Derrius Guice denied reports of being involved in an altercation during his visit with the Eagles and says he doesn’t know about an NFL Network report that there might be another story coming out about him that could be “embarrassing” to him and the organization.After his slide down the draft ended when Washington selected the LSU product 59th overall, late in the second round, Guice expressed confusion about why he didn’t go as high as projected.“It did surprise me because a lot of the things came out of nowhere and weren’t true,” Guice said Friday night on a conference call with local reporters. “I just didn’t understand why me out of all people because I’m great to everybody, I have a great personality and I just didn’t understand why everything just hit so hard with me out of everybody.”Asked specifically about reports that he was involved in an altercation on his visit to Phi.
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