According to Marc Stein at ESPN, the Hornets and the Washington Wizards have agreed to terms on a trade. The Hornets will ship out Trevor Ariza & Emeka Okafor to Washington in exchange for Rashard Lewis and the 46th overall pick in this years draft.
This is big for the Hornets as they get rid of the contracts of Trevor Ariza and Emeka Okafor, combined the Hornets would have owed them $43 million over the next two years. Although they are now responsible for the huge contract of $23 Million per year that Rashard Lewis has. He is currently the 2nd highest paid player in the league right now for some reason. Lewis played in 28 games last season for the Wizards and only averaged 7.7 points per game and put up the worst FG percentage on his career (outside of his rookie season). The only player in the NBA that gets paid more than Lewis right now is Kobe Bryant. Lewis’ contract expires at the end of this upcoming season so it isn’t that bad.
The Hornets also get another draft piece to go along with their two lottery picks. The Wizards owned the Mavericks 2nd round pick, 46th overall and will hand it over to New Orleans as a part of this deal. This can be huge for the Hornets as this is a very deep draft. They only have a little over a week now to scout and evaluate players that deep in the draft, but there will still be some gems on the board at that time. Some players that are projected to be drafted around that time include Kim English, Mike Scott, Kevin Murphy, William Buford, and 7 footer Henry Sims.
This gives the Hornets now have more flexibility and will be able to pick the best player available with the 10th pick, they can fill the biggest need later on now with their newly acquired 2nd round pick.