Did you think Gerald Henderson had likely played his last game as a Bobcat? I didn’t. The thought didn’t cross my mind until this week. Gerald Henderson might be moving on. Either as a restricted free agent, signing elsewhere because the Bobcats can’t or won’t match or in a sign and trade because the Bobcats don’t think he’s worth what some other team does.
It’s strange. I knew it was an option. Restricted free agents at the end of those rookie deals you have several options, 2 of which include the guy staying on your team though. Either he signs an extension, signs the qualifying offer and sticks around another year or he signs with another team. Another option, as with any free agent is the ol’ sign and trade. It looks like Hendo might get the last option.
I thought for sure the team this up coming season was going to be the same roster plus whoever they drafted and maybe some free agents to fill the end of the bench. Same starting lineup, unless there was a huge rookie added. Henderson and Kemba co-captains again. My mental picture is Henderson will always be a Bobcat. I guess I’m a little childish in that way. I didn’t understand why Alonzo Mourning would want to play anywhere but Charlotte when he left for Miami. I’m still sort of that way about beloved players.
Henderson is beloved. Longest tenured Bobcat, captain, and he’s taken a serious beating the last 2 seasons. He’s grown up, was handed the baton by Gerald Wallace and now he’s a serviceable NBA shooting guard. He’s not the future, he’s not a franchise cornerstone but he’s a good player that’s only ever been a Bobcats player. I’m not too far outside saying that little kids might cry if he’s not a Bobcat next year.
The option seemed very real until I started writing this on Friday afternoon that Monta Ellis could be coming to Charlotte via sign and trade for Henderson. It didn’t happen because he was straight up signed by Dallas. Now that the options are slimming for players to possibly replace Henderson as well as places for Henderson to land, it looks like the Bobcats might hold on to the Duke product.
I know the parties are still far apart on the extension deal, but it looks more likely that both Henderson and the Bobcats could be doing this again next season. If I had to put money on it, I’d guess the qualifying offer would be the most likely outcome.