Report: Hornets' Michael Kidd-Gilchrist Opt into $13M Player Contract Option

Rob Goldberg@TheRobGoldbergFeatured ColumnistJune 19, 2019

Charlotte Hornets forward Michael Kidd-Gilchrist (14) drives to the basket against the Washington Wizards during the first half of an NBA basketball game in Charlotte, N.C., Friday, Feb. 22, 2019. (AP Photo/Chuck Burton)
Chuck Burton/Associated Press

Charlotte Hornets forward Michael Kidd-Gilchrist has reportedly opted into the final year of his contract worth $13 million, per Shams Charania of Stadium and The Athletic.

The 25-year-old had a disappointing 2018-19 season, coming almost exclusively off the bench for the first time in his career. His averages of 6.7 points, 3.8 rebounds and 18.4 minutes per game were all the lowest of his seven years in the NBA.

He also underwent surgery earlier this month to fix a chronic groin strain.

With plenty of uncertainty regarding his future, Kidd-Gilchrist had a clear option to take the guaranteed money for one more year. If he bounces back in 2019-20, he could find a much bigger market for his services next summer.

The forward was the No. 2 overall pick in the 2012 draft, one spot behind college teammate Anthony Davis and one spot ahead of All-Star Bradley Beal. Unfortunately, Kidd-Gilchrist hasn't lived up to expectations, averaging 8.8 points per game in his career while having little confidence in his outside shot.

Though he has been a quality defender in his career, the Hornets were expecting more of him by this point.

He signed a four-year, $52 million extension following his rookie deal, but that seems to be hurting the Hornets at the moment.

Charlotte will go into next year owing at least $13 million to each of Kidd-Gilchrist, Cody Zeller, Marvin Williams, Bismack Biyombo and Nicolas Batum. With Kemba Walker potentially leaving in free agency, there are a lot of question marks for this organization going forward.