Bobcats may trade or pay for pick
CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- The Charlotte Bobcats are talking with teams about either purchasing a pick or making a trade that would yield selections in Thursday's NBA draft.
Coach Larry Brown said Monday that several teams are looking to give up picks. The Michael Jordan-owned Bobcats don't own a selection in either the first or second round.
"Michael might buy a draft pick. I don't know," Brown said. "We might be able to move a contract to get a draft pick. I don't know. It might be a trade involved that could do that. You better be aware of the talent and what value you have on a pick."
While Brown has shied away from saying for certain that he'll return for a third season in Charlotte, he's been busy putting dozens of players through pre-draft workouts over the past few weeks.
Jerome Randle of California, Lance Thomas of Duke, Deon Thompson of North Carolina, Ryan Thompson of Rider, Ben Uzoh of Tulsa and Jeremy Wise, who played at Southern Mississippi before spending a year in the NBA Development League, worked out Monday.
"It's a miracle that we've got so many kids in without having a pick," Brown said. "We're real fortunate in that respect. With 50 underclassmen declaring, you might find a lot of kids under normal circumstances would have gotten selected that maybe would be available if they're not drafted. We have to be active in that regard."
There are several incentives for Charlotte to acquire picks. Starting point guard Raymond Felton will be an unrestricted free agent on July 1 and it's possible the Bobcats won't re-sign him. With D.J. Augustin the only other point guard on the roster, general manager Rod Higgins has said they'll have to get another point guard if Felton doesn't return.
The Bobcats are also close to the luxury tax, a payroll threshold that Jordan said the money-losing Bobcats won't go over.
"We have a lot of roster spots potentially. We're kind of limited because we're close to the luxury tax," Brown said. "A draft pick might be a valuable thing to have because it won't affect the luxury tax this year."
The Bobcats have made seven trades involving 21 players since the start of the 2008-09 season.
Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press
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