Hornets Rookie James Bouknight Reveals How Michael Jordan Helped Him to Overcome His Summer League Struggles

Published 08/13/2021, 1:53 AM EDT
DETROIT – APRIL 06: Michael Jordan is announced as a member of the 2009 Hall-of-Fame class at halftime of the Michigan State Spartans and the North Carolina Tar Heels during the 2009 NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball National Championship game at Ford Field on April 6, 2009 in Detroit, Michigan. (Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)


After struggling to make their mark in the league for many years, Michael Jordan owned Charlotte Hornets certainly impressed many with their last season’s performance. Spearheaded by sensational rookie LaMelo Ball, the Hornets played some of the most exciting basketball in the league.

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But the Hornets missed out on the playoffs and eventually entered the draft lottery. While they entered an off-season with a pretty slim guard rotation with Ball and Terry Rozier, the draft might have given them a perfect addition in James Bouknight.

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Bouknight who was touted as high as a top 6 pick by many mock drafts, is one of the most athletic guards in the draft class. The 20-year-old is certainly one of the most intriguing prospects and can be a potential steal of the class.

James Bouknight speaks about Michael Jordan mentoring him

Bouknight along with other players from the 2021 draft class are currently playing the NBA summer league. With rookie talents and even NBA players participating, the summer league becomes essential for new players to make their mark. The 20-year-old Hornets rookie has had a mixed start to his summer league so far.

After a decent debut, Bouknight had a night to forget in his second game as Kings’ rookie Davion Mitchell hounded him. With a 11-point and 5 turnovers outing, the rookie certainly was in need for some motivation. Bouknight certainly got it from the best as owner Michael Jordan reportedly contacted the rookie and gave some pointers.

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“He (Jordan) critiqued my game, told me what he saw. Not many 20-year-olds fresh in the league can say the best player to ever pick up a basketball is calling to give them pointers.”

This was certainly the motivation the 20-year-old needed against the San Antonio Spurs. the guard. Scoring 23 points along with 8 assists and 4 rebounds, Bouknight had his best game so far.

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The 20-year-old can play a crucial role with Charlotte this season. If the 6’5″ guard can make an immediate impact off the bench, he can be a key rotational guard. A prospect of him partnering up with LaMelo Ball is intriguing as well.

Bouknight’s electrifying pace and athleticism coupled with Lamelo’s passing can be a dangerous combination and might terrorize defenses for years to come. How do you think will James Bouknight fair in the NBA?

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Aditya Mohapatra

1186 articles

Aditya Mohapatra is a sports enthusiast who primarily covers the NBA for EssentiallySports. Having graduated in Mass Communication, he has prior experience in writing for ABP News, and has been writing for EssentiallySports since November 2020. This die-hard Los Angeles Lakers fan feels that LeBron James is the best thing to have ever happened to the NBA, and will hold a healthy debate with anyone suggesting otherwise.

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