ESPN: Hornets Skyrocket Up Future Rankings
11. New Orleans Hornets | Future Power Rating: 659
PLAYERS MANAGEMENT MONEY MARKET DRAFT
254 (20th) 127 (11th) 162 (5th) 28 (24th) 88 (3rd)
What a difference a season makes. The Hornets are by far the most improved team in the rankings, elevating from 27th to 11th after two major changes put them in much better position to compete. The first was the sale of the team to Tom Benson, which stopped the NBA from looking over GM Dell Demps' shoulder and allowed him to make some shrewd moves -- such as signing Gustavo Ayon for peanuts and then parlaying him into Ryan Anderson over the summer, or the little-discussed heist of Greivis Vasquez from Memphis.
That lifted the Hornets' management score more than any other team's, but the real cause of the rise in New Orleans' ranking came when they won the lottery and selected center Anthony Davis. We may not be crazy about the rest of the roster, but Davis alone pushed our ranking of the Hornets' roster into the middle of the pack. Throw in Anderson and Eric Gordon, and the makings of a good team are there.
The Hornets' market isn't doing them any favors, but the rest of their positions remain strong. New Orleans will be well under the cap in 2013 after a shrewd deal that sent out the cap-clogging deals of Trevor Ariza and Emeka Okafor, which will allow them to pursue more help for their fledgling cast. And the Hornets are looking good for the draft too, as they'll likely tack on another losing season before the rebuilding begins in earnest in 2013.
(Previous rank: 27)