CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) -The Charlotte Bobcats are making it clear: their two first round draft picks are available.
Vice president of basketball operations Bernie Bickerstaff has fielded numerous trade offers for the eighth and 22nd picks, and could swing a deal before Thursday's draft.
``Our philosophy is if you trade the picks then it has to make you immediately better,'' Bickerstaff said Tuesday. ``There are scenarios out there that look good to us and we like because they make us better.''
Bickerstaff didn't reveal the teams he's talked to, but several teams, including Philadelphia, Phoenix and Golden State, have shown interest in moving up in the draft.
``There are a lot of rumors, and we'd like to start some,'' Bickerstaff joked.
The Bobcats appear willing to give up draft picks for a veteran player, or move down in the draft because they feel it's deep enough that they can still get a quality player.
``There are terrific players from 1 to probably 20 that can come in and get minutes for you right away,'' general manager Rod Higgins said. ``We're going to be fortunate enough to get a player, particularly at eight, that can come in and contribute and we'll develop him.
``If we're not calling at eight, that means we've got a pretty good player that we've traded for.''
The Bobcats' most glaring needs are center and a low-post scorer. The draft, while deep, is lacking scoring big men after Greg Oden of Ohio State, who is expected to be the No. 1 overall pick.
The Bobcats were impressed with forward Corey Brewer of Florida after his workout. Charlotte also auditioned fellow forwards Al Thornton of Florida State and Joakim Noah of Florida, while team officials were impressed with Georgia Tech guard Javaris Crittenton's workout.
``We've had some interesting guys: Noah, Thornton, Brewer, Crittenton, all of those guys are going to warrant some attention when we look at No. 8,'' Higgins said.
With the 22nd pick, the Bobcats will choose from some of the players who worked out for them, Higgins said.
Bickerstaff also indicated they would be interested in getting in on any multiple-team trades involving superstars Kobe Bryant of the Los Angeles Lakers and Kevin Garnett of Minnesota. While both players are unlikely to end up in Charlotte, the Bobcats could be helpful in a deal because of their wealth of salary cap space.
``I think we're going to defer talking about those players. I will say we have no problems being facilitators,'' Bickerstaff said.
The Bobcats worked out four more players Tuesday, including swingman Nick Young of Southern California, a possible lottery pick. Morris Almond of Rice, a possible late first-round pick, Jared Jordan of Marist and Ohio State's Ron Lewis were also on hand.
The Bobcats have worked out more than 30 players, another indication they're uncertain where they'll be picking.
``We've had a significant amount of inquiries about both picks, and really no one has insulted us,'' Bickerstaff said.
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