Melvin Frickin’ Ely!

Make way for your newest New Orleans Hornet, a 6-10, 261 pound chunk of momma-didn't-love-me. Yes, the Hornets announced today that they have signed free agent Melvin Ely.

Melvin, everybody. Everybody, Melvin.

Melvin Ely, waving at some people

Terms of the deal were not announced, but I'm pretty sure Melvin's gonna be making more money than me now. Big timin'. I presume he was signed to a one-year deal for the veteran's minimum (about $900,000 for a five-year vet). After all, it's not like the Hornets have a bunch of cash to be throwing around, and Ely will be lucky to get 5 minutes a night if everyone stays healthy. (Big if, I know.)

I don't know much about Melvin's game apart from what the stats tell me. We didn't go to the same school and he never dated my sister. Every picture I've seen of the dude has him favoring his right hand though, so I'm gonna throw it out there that he's not a lefty.

Melvin's best season as a pro came as a Bobcat in 2005-06, when he averaged 9.8 points and 4.9 boards in about 24 minutes per. He holds career averages of 6.2 points and 3.6 rebounds, shooting .460 from the field.

Charlotte traded him to San Antonio last February, and dude didn't get much burn with the champs, appearing in just six regular season games and sitting out the Spurs' entire Playoff run. Word is that he's secretly very very pissed at Gregg Popovich for starting Tim Duncan ahead of him in the Finals and thus wanted to sign with the Hornets so he could beat the Spurs eight times this coming season. Kinda like Uma Thurman in Kill Bill.

Of course, Melvin and me might be all excited about his new job and the super-happy-fun times that lie ahead, but the move might mean a sad face for some other dudes. Cedric Simmons, for example, might be punching a wall right now. Kinda like De Niro in Raging Bull. You have to figure he (Simmons, not De Niro) just got bumped down a spot in the rotation and is now a step closer to Brandon Bassness. 

Then there's Chris Andersen and Jackson Vroman. Some folks over on the relevant HR thread figure the Ely addition means the Hornets ain't interested in eventually bringing back the Birdman, who of course is suspended until January, 2008 for violating the NBA's anti-dumbass policy. As for Vroman, any impression he made as part of the Hornets' summer league team may not matter now.

Oh well. The Hornets just added to an already fine off-season so I'm sleeping good tonight. Can we get this season started already?

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