Mitch Kupchak started the press conference for some reason talking about how the Hornets wanted to build through the draft. He said the team “is very close to being a playoff team” and called LaMelo the cornerstone of the team for the next several years.
LaMelo started by thanking everyone in the crowd for having his back and saying that he “loves y’all.” He said it wasn’t a hard decision to sign an extension, pointing to the fact that he loves the life he has in Charlotte even if the basketball hasn’t gone that well so far. He agreed with a question that the contract extension adds a little extra responsibility for him to lead this team to the playoffs.
Ball said he’s excited for the selection of Miller. He views Miller like his little brother and is excited for what he can bring to the team with his handle and athleticism. But Miller won’t be allowed to drive any of LaMelo’s cars. He said the return of Bridges is “good vibes” and he’s excited for that as well.
It was brought up a couple of times during the press conference that Ball is the first player drafted by the Hornets to sign a rookie max contract extension, which says a lot about the draft history of a team that rarely makes the playoffs.
Ball isn’t worried about outside voices putting pressure on him. His father instilled in him that “pressure” is finding your next meal or finding a place to sleep, so he has nothing to worry about.
Mitch Kupchak said he thinks the talent for the team to be successful is on the roster; the players just need to grow and develop. He did allude to the need for a veteran and a ball handling guard, which would probably be addressed by one player if the Hornets are able to find one.
The last question of the press conference put LaMelo on the spot asking him what he thought about the roster. He answered by saying he has Kupchak’s back and he agrees with his assessment of the roster.