Bower addresses recent inactivity with NBA.com

Wednesday, July 15, 2009
By: Jim Eichenhofer, Hornets.com

* More audio interviews from Las Vegas at Hornets.com's Summer League Central

While numerous title-contending teams have added major pieces to their roster since draft night, New Orleans has been silent on the transaction front. The Hornets have been rumored to be in contention to sign several free agents, but haven’t come to an agreement with any player.

With that as the backdrop, NBA.com broadcasters Rick Kamla and Antonio Harvey interviewed Hornets general manager Jeff Bower during Tuesday’s NBA Summer League game vs. the Clippers. Bower told the duo that after acquiring Darren Collison and Marcus Thornton via the draft, the Hornets’ top priority now is to add frontcourt depth, a problem area over the past few seasons.

“We made our steps forward in the draft in our backcourt,” Bower said. “We know our target right now (is) frontcourt players. We’re involved in a lot of different scenarios and situations that we have a lot of confidence in things coming together.

“But we’re moving very slowly. It’s not that things aren’t being done; it’s just that there are decisions and processes in place that have to be played out. We understand the timing of it. For our fans and for all of us associated with it, we want everything done yesterday. But this summer is a summer that’s going to force you to be patient to get the right players, at the right time, at the right price.”

Harvey wondered if the Hornets had created unrealistic expectations for themselves with their surprising 56-win season in 2007-08, which led most to describe last season’s 49-win output as disappointing.

“I think when you look at the 56-win season, that was a franchise record,” Bower responded. “We followed that up with 49 wins (but) we wanted more. We expected to do more. When we look at the number of injuries we dealt with to key players, and the overall positioning we were in over the last 10 days of the season, we were in the thick of things. We would like to think that with a healthy team next year, and with the changes we’ve already made, we’ve improved ourselves. But we understand that we’ve got a lot more work to do.”