The Charlotte Hornets reportedly would like to have forward Miles Bridges back on the roster in the 2023-24 season.
Bridges, who is currently a free agent, did not play in the 2022-23 season after he pleaded no contest to felony domestic violence charges. He was suspended for 30 games by the NBA, and the league has considered 20 of those 30 games already served.
This means that Bridges would be able to play early in the 2023-24 campaign if a team were to pick him up.
“The Hornets will likely have a degree of apprehension after Miles Bridges’ felony domestic violence charges, for which he pleaded no contest and was suspended 30 games by the NBA,” ESPN’s Jonathan Givony wrote. “Bridges sat out the past season and is currently a free agent, but the front office would like to have him back on the roster next year, sources told ESPN.”
There are obvious character concerns when it comes to Bridges that could ultimately supersede his talent on the basketball court. However, it appears Charlotte is at least willing to give him a second chance.
Bridges did play well in the 2021-22 season for the Hornets, and he seemed set for a major contract last offseason had it not been for his actions.
In 80 games in the 2021-22 campaign, Bridges averaged a career-high 20.2 points, 7.0 rebounds and 3.8 assists per game while shooting 49.1 percent from the field and 33.1 percent from beyond the arc.
He was a huge part of Charlotte’s rotation, playing 35.5 minutes per game. The Hornets made the play-in tournament in the Eastern Conference that season, but they took a massive step back in the 2022-23 campaign, finishing with one of the worst records in the NBA.
As a result, the team has the No. 2 overall pick in the 2023 NBA Draft.
From a basketball perspective, the Hornets would benefit from bringing Bridges back into their rotation. The team could use more options on the wing, especially with Gordon Hayward aging and Kelly Oubre Jr. set to become a free agent this offseason.
The bigger issue is whether or not Bridges can stay out of trouble. The Hornets may believe he deserves a second chance, but the young forward needs to earn the trust of the organization and NBA as well going forward.