After an extremely slow start to his career, it appears that Hornets shooting guard, Jeremy Lamb has finally molded into the starting caliber player that scouts thought he could become when he entered the league in 2012. Lamb was once an afterthought and considered to a bust among many. Now he’s the running mate to Hornets superstar point guard, Kemba Walker.
Just a little recap. Lamb arrived in Charlotte in 2015 by way of trade from the Oklahoma City Thunder for just Luke Ridnour, who never played a minute for the Thunder and a second round pick. I can recall reports during that time that Lamb was unmotivated, had a lack of intensity, and just simply didn’t fit in to Oklahoma Cities future plans.
The only silver lining in this trade for Charlotte was that Lamb had previously shown some slight glimpses of potential and was a crucial player on the 2010-11 University of Connecticut National Championship team along with Walker. Hopefully being reunited with his college mate could propel his career back into a positive direction.
That’s exactly what would happen. Since arriving in Charlotte, Lamb has done nothing but improve off of each previous season. He even grew while spending his first three years stashed away in Steve Clifford’s dog house. Now his skill set is finally been used properly and he has fully been unleashed in the starting lineup under James Borrego.
Lamb has leaped out to his best start in the NBA so far this season. Averaging 15.1 points, 5.6 rebounds and 1.7 assists per game. With points and rebounds being his best averages so far since he’s entered the league. Since Walker’s breakout 60 point game that resulted in a loss against the Philadelphia 76ers. The Hornets have realized how desperately they need a second scoring option behind Walker and Lamb has fully grasped onto that role.
Over the month of November Lamb averaged 17.9 points and 6.4 rebounds as he’s started to grow more and more aggressive scoring the basketball and crashing the board for rebounds. Not only has looked more aggressive with his scoring, he’s been efficient in doing so. Lamb is currently shooting a 45.7% field goal percentage and 36.5% from 3. Both of these percentages are either equal to or pretty much the same as last seasons total and he’s shooting both at a higher rate. If this can transition into more W’s in the win column everything will be alright for the Hornets this season.
Jeremy Lamb probably isn’t the answer to the Hornets problems unless something drastic happens over the next few months, this is probably the best we will see from him. Which of course, isn’t a bad thing at all. If Lamb can be a 15-17 points per game guy for Charlotte, then that’s great! However, they still need another guy outside of Walker who can consistently give them 20 ppg. That guy may already be on the roster in young talents such as Malik Monk or Miles Bridges, or it could come via trade. There is simply no telling at this point in the season.
Its uncertain where Lamb’s future lies. He might be playing too well for the Hornets to be able to resign him after his contract is up next summer. He’ll also be the center of almost every Charlotte trade rumor until then as the front office continues to search for ways to improve the roster around Walker. For now, it’s great to see the player that Jeremy Lamb has turned into after pretty much being written off as a bust early in his career.
Regardless of what team he’s on next season you can bet he will be a solid contributor in the league for years to come.