July 3, 2019 – Charlotte Hornets President of Basketball Operations & General Manager Mitch Kupchak announced today the team has signed forward PJ Washington. Per team policy, terms of the deal were not disclosed.
The Hornets selected Washington with the 12th overall pick in the 2019 NBA Draft. Washington, a 6-8 forward from Kentucky, was a consensus All-America Third Team selection and earned All-SEC First Team honors as a sophomore in 2018-19. Washington led the Wildcats in scoring (15.2 ppg), rebounding (7.5 rpg) and ranked second in blocks (1.2 bpg) during his sophomore campaign. He shot .522 from the field (190-364) and .423 from beyond the three-point line (33-78), making him one of only four players in the nation standing 6-8 or taller who averaged at least 15.0 points per game, shot .500 or better from the field, shot .400 or better from beyond the three-point line and made at least 30 three-pointers.
For the season, Washington ranked third in the SEC in field goal percentage, fifth in total rebounds (264), sixth in rebounds per game, sixth in defensive rebounds (183), seventh in field goals made (190), eighth in total points (531), ninth in free throws made (118), 11th in points per game and 15th in both total blocks (43) and blocks per game. He was a finalist for the Karl Malone Award honoring the country’s top power forward, as well as the John R. Wooden Award and the Naismith Trophy.
As a freshman in 2017-18, Washington averaged 10.8 points on .519 shooting from the field (135-260), 5.7 rebounds and 1.5 assists in 27.4 minutes in 37 games played.