At 6’8 228 pounds PJ Washington has the body of an ideal power forward in today’s game where the back to the basket game
has faded. Towns,Davis,Embiid,Porzingis,Aldridge, and Griffin still have the old school game and so does PJ Washington.
For the Hornets it’s only up from here, Kemba Walker turned down $168 million which in my opinion was exactly what Kemba deserved and that’s actually pushing it. He’s pushing 30 and limited in size and athleticism, his 3 point range and ball handling is second to none though so you could bank on him producing at a high level for Boston over the next 3 years at least.
Back to the Hornets who are now banking on their new point guard Terry Rozier who is out to prove he is worthy of being a starter in this point guard driven league. Miles Bridges will look to prove he’s much more than just a high flyer but can indeed be a go to scorer and facilitator for the Hornets. Malik Monk and Dwayne Bacon will duke it out for the starting shooting guard position but I expect both to average at least 11 ppg a piece, they are just too talented offensively not to especially with extended minutes.
That brings us to the front court where the Hornets have Marvin Williams,Cody Zeller,Willy HernanGomez and newly drafted PJ Washington. Comparing PJ to Marvin,Cody, and Willy and I don’t think any of the 3 is as talented or polished as PJ Washington. Now that PJ Washington is cleared to resume all basketball activities I think even in limited minutes he will show flashes of being a future 20 ppg 10 rpg big man in the NBA.
Not to mention he has a 7+ wingspan and is not a freak athletically like Zion Williamson or an Amare Stoudemire but he is certainly more fundamentally sound than Amare and Zion who thrive off athleticism and explosiveness. Washington actually reminds me of World-Peace just a bit taller and not as bulky, he definitely needs to work on how he positions himself in the post.
By no means am I claiming he will be a superstar but I’d bet the house on him becoming a solid 2 way big who can be one of the Hornets core pieces. I like to compare power-forwards to Kevin Garnett because in my opinion he was the most complete power forward I had ever seen. From how he faced up on defenders into ridiculous spin moves,pump fakes, and turn around jumpers which were reminiscent to Kobe Bryant and Michael Jordan, I highly doubt Washington ever becomes a hall-of-famer but it is a step forward for a talent deprived Hornets team searching for the next face.
At his peak I could see PJ Washington averaging 22 ppg which is far from bad just not superstar worthy, maybe he averages 9-11 rpg to along with it but if I’m Borrego I start him right away. Why not? He’s the best floor spacing big they have, he can be 3-5 since he has the ability to drive to the basket and convert over multiple defenders.
His most common move is to back down his defender and go to a jump hook, it’s how he scores a good 70 percent of the time. So for PJ it’s about maybe 9-10 pounds to his frame if possible and to focus on getting that turn around jump shot down pack which he lacks. Nowitzki,Garnett, and even Duncan who later on developed his mid-range game had extensive careers because they worked on their mechanics and becoming more skilled in the post because athleticism fades.
To conclude, PJ is only 21 years old and in a situation where the pressure is off. The Hornets are expected to be bottom dwellers and winning 30-35 game should be considered a step in the right direction for the franchise. I say start PJ right away, with 20-25 minutes a night I think he can average 13-16 ppg with 7-8 rpg and get better and better as he gets older. I’ll end it there, make sure you check out PJ Washington this coming season.