Haywood returning home, hopes to ignite Bobcats

Associated Press  |  Last updated July 26, 2012
Brendan Haywood is returning home with a purpose. Haywood, who grew up in Greensboro, made it clear he's coming back to the Carolinas with the goal of helping the Charlotte Bobcats turn things around after they finished with the worst record (7-59) in the NBA last season. Claimed off waivers last week from the Dallas Mavericks, the 7-foot Haywood was introduced Thursday at a news conference along with free-agent acquisition Ramon Sessions, a point guard who opted out of his contract with the Los Angeles Lakers to sign with the Bobcats. ''Myself and Ramon will be great additions to this team,'' Haywood said. ''We're looking forward to getting this thing started and help this team be better than it was last season.'' Haywood still owns a home in Charlotte and has frequently worked out at the Bobcats facility in the past during the offseason. He called returning to Charlotte ''a blessing.'' ''My family and friends will have a chance to come to the games, and then playing with this organization is great for me, so it's the best of both worlds,'' Haywood said. Sessions is also enjoying a homecoming of sorts. He grew up in Myrtle Beach, S.C., about a five-hour drive from Charlotte. Both players realize that the challenge ahead of them is steep given the Bobcats are coming off a rough season and the roster is still very young. And they're realistic when it comes to the future. ''We aren't expecting to win 50 games and go to the third round of the playoffs,'' Sessions said. ''We're just trying to do better than last year night in and night out.'' Added Haywood: ''The past is the past. There is a new coaching staff in place and new young players in place. You can't change the past; you can only build for the future.'' Bobcats president of basketball operations Rod Higgins felt like the team needed to add depth and experience at both positions. ''Both have been starters in this league, which is a huge benefit for us,'' Higgins said. Haywood, an 11-year NBA veteran, has played in 733 career games for the Washington Wizards and Mavericks with 531 starts. He has career averages of 7.2 points, 6.2 rebounds and 1.4 blocks in 23.7 minutes. His career field-goal percentage of .534 ranks seventh among active players and 28th in NBA history. And he was a member of Dallas' 2011 NBA championship team. He has a chance to start at center this season, depending on where the Bobcats play Bismack Biyombo. The 6-foot-3 Sessions has played in 323 career games during his career and will compete for playing time with last year's other lottery pick, Kemba Walker. ''With losing D.J. Augustin in free agency we felt the need to get a quality point guard and Ramon filled that need,'' Higgins said. ''He's a young veteran who still has the ability to improve. He can create off the dribble and is fast and explosive. And Brendan is a guy who can come in and play minutes right away for us.'' It's still unclear if either will start in Charlotte. Higgins said their playing time will largely be determined once the team begins practicing with new coach Mike Dunlap.
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

John Wall’s retweet saves fan from taking final exam

WATCH: Cubs pull off two miraculous defensive plays in a row

To raise money for charity, a wrestling fan has Cody Rhodes slam him on thumbtacks

Gregg Popovich on Steve Kerr’s health issues: ‘It’s just a crap situation’

CJ McCollum clearly interested in having Paul Millsap join Blazers

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Injuries are depriving us from watching the Spurs thrive in the clutch

Nashville Predators fans just made the worst hype video of 2017

Draymond Green files trademark paperwork for ‘Dray Day’

Aaron Judge gets special fan section at Yankee Stadium

New lawsuit alleges NFL knew about CTE for decades

Magic reportedly hire Raptors GM Jeff Weltman as new president

NBA Weekend Awards: Who will take a bite of the Snow White Crystal Apple?

The 'How two award snubs might shake up the NBA' quiz

Preparing for the BIG3: Q&A with BIG3 co-founder Jeff Kwatinetz

Two months in and Nintendo's Switch dominates 2017 video game market

Getaway Day: League leaders falter allowing new teams to surge ahead

Why wait? Our too soon Cavaliers-Warriors NBA Finals preview

The 10 best sports docs available for streaming

Best of Yardbarker: Gregg Popovich doesn't mince words

The 'Happy birthday to two of the NBA's all-time antagonists' quiz

The shortstop evolution continues to raise the ceiling

Three Up, Three Down: Astros dominate in every category

Box Score 5/19: Heartbreak in OT

NBA News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

NBA Weekend Awards: Who will take a bite of the Snow White Crystal Apple?

The 'How two award snubs might shake up the NBA' quiz

Preparing for the BIG3: Q&A with BIG3 co-founder Jeff Kwatinetz

Two months in and Nintendo's Switch dominates 2017 video game market

Getaway Day: League leaders falter allowing new teams to surge ahead

Why wait? Our too soon Cavaliers-Warriors NBA Finals preview

The 10 best sports docs available for streaming

Best of Yardbarker: Gregg Popovich doesn't mince words

The 'Happy birthday to two of the NBA's all-time antagonists' quiz

The shortstop evolution continues to raise the ceiling

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker