Charlotte Hornets fire Coach Borrego after 4 seasons
The Charlotte Hornets have fired Coach James Borrego.
The 44-year-old Borrego was 138-163 in four seasons with the Hornets. Charlotte finished 43-39 this season, but was blown out in the play-in game for the second straight year. The Hornets have not make the playoffs since the 2015-16 season and have not won a playoff series since the 2001-02 season.
ESPN was first to report the firing.
Charlotte has improved its win total by 10 in each of the past two seasons and the coach expressed his optimism about the team moving forward after exit interviews.
The decision comes after the Hornets had given Borrego a multi-year contract extension in August.
In most seasons Charlotte's 43 wins might have gotten the team into the playoffs as an eight, seven or six seed, but because the East was so competitive, the Hornets finished 10th. They lost 132-103 at Atlanta in the play-in game, one year after losing to Indiana by 27 points as the 10 seed.
It’s unclear at this point who'll replace Borrego.
The Hornets have a young talent pool to build around, including All-Star LaMelo Ball and Miles Bridges, as well as Terry Rozier and Gordon Hayward.
Charlotte posted its highest offensive rating in franchise history and finished eighth overall in the NBA, but the defense continued to lag behind. Charlotte ranked 22nd in defense among the league’s 30 teams. and the Hornets struggled to defend Trae Young and the Hawks in the play-in game.
Several Hornets players had said prior to the season if the team didn't make the playoffs it would be considered a disappointment.