NBA Rumors: Pacers Could Trade Myles Turner To Hornets For PJ Washington, Cody Martin & 2021 First-Round Pick

Myles Turner looking at the scoreboard
Gettyimages | Andy Lyons
Basketball

Two years after they lost Kemba Walker in free agency, the Charlotte Hornets are slowly becoming a significant team in the Eastern Conference once again. As of now, they are in the playoff race, sitting in the No. 8 spot in the Eastern Conference with a 28-30 record. However, despite the improvements that they have shown in the 2020-21 NBA season, the Hornets are still far from being a legitimate title contender in the league.

In order to have a realistic chance of bringing home the Larry O'Brien Trophy, the Hornets should strongly consider making major upgrades on their roster this summer.

Hornets Could Trade For Myles Turner

One of the potential trade targets for the Hornets in the 2021 offseason is Myles Turner of the Indiana Pacers. The Pacers are yet to make Turner available on the trading block, but some people believe that they may consider moving him if they are presented with an intriguing offer. In a recent article, Zach Buckley of Bleacher Report included the Turner-to-Hornets deal on his list of most realistic trades that could happen in the summer of 2021.

In the proposed trade scenario, the Hornets would be acquiring Turner from the Pacers by sending them a package that includes PJ Washington, Cody Martin, and top-five protected 2021 first-round pick

Myles Turner Gives Hornets Long-Term Answer At Center

Turner would be an incredible trade target for the Hornets this summer. With the impending free agency of Cody Zeller and Bismack Biyombo, the successful acquisition of Turner would allow the Hornets to fill the void at their starting center position. He would give them a very reliable scoring option under the basket, a great rebounder, shot-blocker, and floor-spacer.

This season, the 25-year-old big man is averaging 12.6 points, 6.5 rebounds, and 3.4 blocks while shooting 47.7 percent from the field and 33.5 percent from beyond the arc, per ESPN.

Proposed Trade Would Improve Hornets' Offense & Defense

Turner is yet to be named an All-Star, but Buckley believes that his potential arrival in Charlotte would bring a tremendous improvement with their performance on both ends of the floor and make them "potentially scary in the future."

"His paint presence alone might be enough to get Charlotte's 14th-ranked defense into the top 10," Buckley wrote. "At the other end, his soft shooting touch (career 35.2 percent from deep) would help spread the floor and keep attack lanes open for Ball, Hayward, Terry Rozier and Miles Bridges. Rozier would be the second-oldest member of that quintet at 27, meaning the Hornets could be formidable now and potentially scary in the future."

Why Trade To Hornets Make Sense For Myles Turner

Being traded to the Hornets may end up being beneficial for Turner. As much as he wanted to stay in Indiana, the Pacers are clearly not the team that could maximize his full potential and turn him into one of the most dominant big men in the league. Unlike in Indiana where he's sharing the frontcourt with Domantas Sabonis, Turner is likely to receive more playing time, a permanent spot in the starting lineup, and a significant  role on the offensive end of the floor with the Hornets.