I’m obviously thinking a year or 2 ahead and I understand Miles Bridges’s personal matters off the court and how they have effected him actually getting on the court but when he the Hornets are going to take off. Dating back to last season I started to see the player his coach from college Tom Izzo compared him to; Tom believed Miles could become a hybrid of Draymmond Green and I could just see the improvement he made on his post-game last season and how much he improved as a 3-point shooter; an area which was one of his glaring weaknesses headed into the 2018 NBA Draft in which he was drafted 12th overall by the Charlotte Hornets. You could just feel Miles Bridges’s impact game after game last season and it is clear his absence has led to the Hornets’s rough start this season which they seem to be climbing out of with the returns of Gordon Hayward and LaMelo Ball recently.
LaMelo Ball? I kid you not he only caught my attention the moment I overheard he wanted to get to the NBA and be recognized as the best player ever 15 years down the line. I was always an advocate for his older brother Lonzo Ball who I just felt would have more success at the NBA level since he was the closest thing I had seen to former hall-of-fame point guard Jason Kidd at UCLA; with the way he carried that team to the Final 4 where he lost but I remember Jason Kidd carrying the then New Jersey Nets to back-to-back NBA Finals and I envisioned Lonzo Ball bringing the Lakers back to relevance in a likely manner which obviously flopped. LaMelo Ball has had an up and down career in the NBA so far; he has had his fare share of games where he has scored 30 plus points gets you 10-15 assists and he leaves you believing he’ll be the point guard to take take Stephen Curry off his throne but for some reason he hasn’t been able to put it all together, well at least not yet.
I’m of the thinking that if the Charlotte Hornets don’t manage to re-sign Miles Bridges despite his off the court issues LaMelo Ball is as good as gone. There is not much to scoff at on the Charlotte Hornets at the present moment; no word on when exactly Miles Bridges could return to the court but the organization is said to be in negotiations with him which is wise of them because if the Lakers find out he is available I am sure they’ll be the first team in line to snag him up and practically destroy the Hornets’s entire future; being that LaMelo Ball isn’t going to stick around in Charlotte long-term, be a 4th-8th seed in the Eastern Conference for 4-5 years and rot out into irrelevancy.
I myself never believed Miles Bridges could ever become the 1st or 2nd best player on a NBA team; I envisioned him at best being a team’s 3rd best player being that he was rather limited offensively in college and he just never came across as someone that would become a legitimate go to option on the offensive end, he came across as a player who could get you 10-20 points max,haul down 7-10 rebounds,2-3 assists,a block and a steal play respectable defense but it’s clear Miles wanted more from himself heading into the NBA. I’ll never forget when Miles Bridges compared the Hornets’s trajectory to the Warriors’s and now I could see where he was coming from; the Warriors built a winner off drafting 3 foundational pieces in Stephen Curry,Klay Thompson,and Draymmond Green; the Warriors went through their growing pains; no one had any clue who they were; former Warriors’s coach Mark Jackson had Draymmond Green coming off the bench and the moment Stephen Curry scored 44 points in the 2013 NBA Playoffs against the San Antonio Spurs was when they had arrived.
The Eastern Conference over the next 2-3 years will be sure to be owned by the Boston Celtics; I won’t say the Milwaukee Bucks because who’s to know what will happen with Khris Middleton over the next year or so as a looming extension gets ever closer for him and I’m not expecting Kevin Durant to scare anyone out East beyond next season. Philadelphia and Miami won’t be relevant for much longer which leaves us with the Charlotte Hornets a team with a dynamic duo of LaMelo Ball and Miles Bridges ready to take the mantly out East. Miles Bridges is a star; he’ll be so good that he’ll make up for both Klay Thompson and Draymmond Green being that he’ll be able to serve as not only LaMelo’s running mate on the offensive end much like Klay is for Steph but he’ll also be able to be that versatile forward who can make plays,rebound,and defend the perimeter and post much like Draymmond does for Golden State. Hopefully Miles Bridges can get back on the court for the second half of the season; LaMelo Ball and Miles Bridges will be sure to make their mark if not this season definitely the next.