Joe Chealey NBA debut

Former College of Charleston guard Joe Chealey (31) puts up a shot against the Boston Celtics in his only appearance in an NBA game last season. Brian Babineau/NBAE

Former College of Charleston standout Joe Chealey got his first taste of the NBA when he made his debut with the Charlotte Hornets last season against the Boston Celtics.

Chealey hopes to get even more NBA experience this season with the Hornets. On Tuesday, he signed a free agent contract with Charlotte. The Hornets also signed former Gonzaga star Josh Perkins.

Chealey, who originally signed with the Hornets last summer, had his contract converted into a two-way contract with Charlotte last October. 

“I’m just trying to get better each time I step on the floor,” Chealey said recently at his youth basketball camp at Charleston's TD Arena. “My goal is to play more than one game this season with Charlotte and hopefully stick on the roster.”

The 6-3 guard appeared in 43 games for the Greensboro Swarm, Charlotte’s G League affiliate, during the 2018-19 season. Chealey averaged 16.3 points, 3.6 rebounds and 5.4 assists for the Swarm.

Chealey, who is fifth on the Cougars’ all-time scoring list with 1,827 career points, made his NBA debut in his lone appearance with the Hornets last season on Jan. 30 against the Boston Celtics, scoring two points with an assist in eight minutes of action.

Chealey had knee surgery in the spring, but is back to full strength and appeared in two games with the Hornets in the NBA’s Summer League last month.

The Cougars have two former players under contract with NBA teams. Forward Jarrell Brantley, who played three seasons with Chealey, was taken in the second round of the 2019 draft with the 50th overall pick by the Utah Jazz.

Reach Andrew Miller at 843-937-5599. Follow him on Twitter @APMILLER_PandC

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