‣ The Charlotte Hornets have officially waived center Kai Jones.
‣ Kai Jones insulted his teammates and publicly requested a trade from the Charlotte Hornets.
The Charlotte Hornets have made the decision to waive center Kai Jones, according to Hornets president of basketball operations and general manager Mitch Kupchak. This announcement comes after Jones was excluded from joining the team for training camp due to unusual social media activity and criticism of his own teammates. The Hornets stated that there is no known timetable for his return and have chosen not to provide any further statements at this time.
Last week, Jones faced controversy for posting strange messages on social media, including an Instagram Live video and negative comments about his teammates Nick Richards and Mark Williams. Jones defended himself against trolls who claimed Richards and Williams were better players, asserting that he was more assertive with the ball and had better self-awareness than Richards. He also challenged anyone to show a video of Williams making a left-handed shot.
Further adding to the drama, Jones took to a different platform to publicly request a trade from the Charlotte Hornets, using the hashtag #GOATLIFE. This act has potential consequences, as NBA rules state that public expressions of a desire to be traded may result in a fine of up to $150,000. At 22 years old, Jones was drafted 19th overall by the New York Knicks in the 2021 NBA Draft and was subsequently traded to the Hornets.
During his time with the Hornets, Jones has played in a total of 67 games off the bench, averaging 2.7 points, 2.0 rebounds, and 9.1 minutes per game. In the 2022-23 season alone, he appeared in 46 games as a reserve and achieved career highs in points, rebounds, and minutes per game. He also boasted an impressive shooting percentage from the field and at the free-throw line. One highlight of Jones’ Hornets career was his standout performance in a win against the Oklahoma City Thunder, where he scored 12 points and grabbed 14 rebounds in just 22 minutes of play.
While it remains to be seen what the future holds for Kai Jones and his NBA career, one thing is certain: his time with the Charlotte Hornets has come to an end. Fans and analysts will undoubtedly keep a close eye on how this situation unfolds and whether Jones will find a new home in the league.