The Julian Wright situation

Published: January 17, 2008

With our team near the peak of the Western Conference with an oh-so-fantastic 26-12 record, there isn't much for us Hornets fans to complain about these days. Everyone is healthy, the bench is playing better, and our first round draft pick has been on the inactive list for the past three games.

Oh wait, maybe we can complain about that last thing! Yeah, let's do that…

Julian Wright, before the inactivity

Our BFF's over at Empty the Bench recently put together a list of ten players they'd like to see get more playing time, and our very own Ju-Ju accounted for a whole ten percent of that list. I was asked to explain why exactly Wright is suffering from severe bench splinters. My thoughts…

I think the main reason Julian Wright isn't getting much playing time is Byron Scott. He has always had a problem with young, inexperienced dudes not named Chris Paul. When Julian has gotten some PT this season, he's been a bundle of energy, but it's nervous energy that causes him to make some dumb turnovers and such. Another coach might put up with that, let the guy play through and learn from his mistakes. But not Byron. He has a very low tolerance for mistake-prone players, as Hornets fans have seen before with the likes of JR Smith, Kirk Snyder and Brandon Bass. I think Byron is a little short-sighted in this respect. Some might say he's jeopardizing the future of the team in order to win right now.

So what does Wright have to do to get some minutes? Probably his biggest problem right now is shooting. Opposing teams dare him to shoot from distance and he can't even knock down 15-footers reliably. I've seen him shooting a high percentage in warm-ups so perhaps it's just a confidence thing. Apart from that, he needs to be a little more selfish. He's known to be a point-forward type with a nice handle and passing skills, and on numerous occasions I've seen him try to setup his teammates when he'd be better served just taking it to the rack. I think if he were to develop more of an attacking instinct it would do wonders for his game.

The whole situation with Wright is somewhat of a Catch-22 though. If he can start to play with more confidence, he'll earn more minutes, but more minutes might be the only way to raise his confidence. I'm just hoping the Hornets can blowout some teams regularly so the kid can get on the floor.

Of course, all the blowouts in the world won't make a difference if Julian stays on the inactive list.

How do you guys feel about the Wright situation?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.