Recent trade rumors are out that the Charlotte Hornets might offer Kemba Walker to the Utah Jazz for a package that includes Rodney Hood and other assets. The Hornets have lately been mentioned in several trade speculations after news broke out that the team is making Walker available for interested teams before next month’s trade deadline.
Walker has been the Hornets’ main star since they drafted him ninth overall in the 2011 draft. The 27-year-old point guard was named an All-Star for the first time last year and also received the NBA Sportsmanship Award in the same season.
Walker has consistently averaged in double figures when it comes to scoring and has a career 41.1 percent field goal shooting percentage, including a 35.1 percent clip from three-point range. This season, he leads the team in scoring (21.7), assists (5.8), and steals (1.2) while also averaging 3.4 rebounds in 34.6 minutes per game for head coach Steve Clifford.
There are rumors that the Hornets are planning to rebuild and “start over” after seasons of frustrations being a middling Eastern Conference squad. The New York Post reported that the team is “ready to entertain trade offers” for Walker as the starting point guard has become their best trade asset at the moment.
Aside from Walker, Charlotte is also offering Dwight Howard, Nic Batum, Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, and Marvin Williams to interested clubs, but teams are reportedly more attracted to the former Connecticut standout and his affordable $12 million a year contract.
FanSided’s Hoops Habit suggested a trade with the Jazz that would send Rodney Hood, Dante Exum, Derrick Favors, and a future first-round draft pick to the Hornets for Walker and Williams.
Hood, 25, has emerged as one of the league’s top trade targets with only a few weeks to go before the deadline. Some analysts believe that his remarkable numbers as Donovan Mitchell’s primary backup have increased his trade value. Hood is currently averaging 16.7 points (career-high), 2.9 boards, and 1.7 assists in 28.3 minutes a night coming off Quin Snyder’s bench.
Tony Jones of the Salt Lake Tribune said that Utah is “actively trying to trade” Hood and that “there is enough interest throughout the league” for the fourth year player. Jones said that with Hood viewing “himself as a starter,” the desire to change teams is likely mutual for both sides.