PJ Washington Has Uncertain Future With Hornets

Restricted free agency is tough for a lot of NBA players. Charlotte Hornets' big man PJ Washington believes he's worth about $20M a season, but because he's restricted, he doesn't have many options. With a universal lack of cap space around the league, teams are not beating down the doors to make him an offer like that, which would have to come in the form of an offer sheet. 

Training camp is only about six weeks away, and with little to no progress on long-term contract talks, it appears that his future with the Hornets is tenuous at best. Washington is now likely to accept the $8.5M qualifying offer, return to the Bugs, and then hit free agency next summer and be open to choose his destination (assuming the offers are there.)

There's also a good possibility that, with an expiring deal, he'll be traded at the deadline in February, and perhaps the acquiring team would be open to extending him. 

Washington had a successful season last year in Charlotte, his 4th in the league, putting up a career-high 15.7 points per game, hitting on an average of two three-pointers per night (on 34.8% shooting from long range). He's a rising young power forward, and if he does enter into free agency next summer at age 25, he should be able to find himself a decent deal.

Photo: Sam Sharpe-USA TODAY Sports