The Charlotte Hornets selected Kentucky big man Nate Richards with the No. 42 overall pick in the 2020 NBA draft Wednesday night. The New Orleans Pelicans traded the pick to the Hornets, per Shams Charania of Stadium and The Athletic.
Bleacher Report Draft Expert Jonathan Wasserman's Scouting Report
Player: Nick Richards
Pro Comparison: Mason Plumlee
Scouting Report: Richards will be called on to run the floor, dive to the hoop, finish and block shots. He put himself in position to get drafted by improving his motor, activity and mid-range touch last year.
Here is a look at the Hornets' roster following this pick:
Hornets Active Roster and Average Salary (Expiration Year)
Nicolas Batum, SF: $27.1M (2021)
PJ Washington, PF: $3.9M (2023)
Jalen McDaniels, PG: $1.5M (2023)
Terry Rozier, PG: $18.9M (2022)
Miles Bridges, SF: $3.6M (2022)
Cody Martin, SF: $1.5M (2022)
Caleb Martin, SF: $1.4M (2022)
Cody Zeller, C: $14M (2021)
Malik Monk, SG: $3.9M (2021)
Devonte' Graham, PG: $1.4M (2021)
LaMelo Ball, PG: Rookie scale contract (2024)
Vernon Carey Jr., C: Rookie scale contract (2024)
Nick Richards, C: Rookie scale contract (2024)
Bismack Biyombo, C: UFA
Willy Hernangomez, C: UFA
Dwayne Bacon, SF: RFA
Kobi Simmons, PG: RFA
Ray Spalding, PF: RFA
The Hornets have been busy in Wednesday's draft, and Richards gives them another big man who can work in pick-and-rolls with new point guard LaMelo Ball.
Ball's vision stands out, so it is not difficult to envision him throwing lobs to Richards during the 2020-21 campaign. Richards should also provide solid interior defense and has the athleticism to serve as a matchup problem for opposing bigs.