Kelly Oubre Jr. Selected As 2nd Annual Rick Bonnell Award Winner
April 7, 2023 – The Charlotte Hornets announced today that veteran guard Kelly Oubre Jr. has been named this season’s recipient of the team’s Rick Bonnell Award. The Rick Bonnell Award, named after the team’s longtime Charlotte Observer beat writer who passed away suddenly in June 2021, is given annually to the Hornets player who best represents himself and the franchise with professionalism and cooperation in his interactions with the media. Oubre Jr. received the award from Bonnell’s daughter, Claire, during an on-court presentation prior to tonight’s game vs. Houston. A 16-person panel of Charlotte media members voted on the award, with Oubre Jr. garnering the most votes.
“I’m very grateful to receive the Rick Bonnell Award for this season,” said Oubre Jr. “My teammates and I understand the value and importance of working with the media and are honored to continue his legacy and passion for basketball here in Charlotte. Thank you to the media members that cover our team who selected me for this honor. We appreciate their work telling all our stories.”
In addition to tonight’s award, the Charlotte Hornets Foundation created the Rick Bonnell Memorial Scholarship, an annual $10,000 scholarship which was awarded for the second time this season. Bianca Rodriguez, a first-generation college student at UNC Charlotte, was selected as this year’s award winner. Bonnell, an award-winning sportswriter for more than 33 years at the Charlotte Observer whose coverage of the Hornets spanned from the franchise’s inaugural 1988-89 season through the 2020-21 campaign, passed away on June 1, 2021, at the age of 63. Last year, the Charlotte Hornets Foundation awarded its inaugural Rick Bonnell Memorial Scholarship to Noah Monroe, a Concord, N.C., native and student at the University of North Carolina.