The Hornets beat the Wizards

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Published: December 31, 2008

Not the most exciting basketball game of the season.  You kind of got the feeling that only three people were working hard – Mike James to try and prove a point, Tyson Chandler, to get his rebounding touch back, and Peja, to find his three point stroke.

Bullets:

  • Chris Paul got a triple double, and actually had a double double of assists and rebounds long before he got into double digits with his scoring.  His shot was simply not falling tonight, and he had to rely on a lot of free throws to get there.  In the end, 10 rebounds, 16 assists, 1 steal, and 15 points on 10 shots.  I’ll take that.
  • The Hornets were force-feeding Peja looks from deep all night.  It was probably a good game to try it, since we were up against the lowly Wizards, and they ran double screens, down screens, cross screens and simple pick and pops for open threes for Peja.  He only managed to hit one of the nine open looks he got.  Come back to us, Peja.  Outside of his poor deep shooting, he did do a few nice things, however, getting an offensive rebound and put back, and picking up five assists – mostly quick passes to Butler and James Posey for corner threes.
  • There was a lot of textbook offense for the Hornets tonight, with Posey and West getting the ball in post-ups, waiting for the double team, and then the ball whipped out and around the perimeter to an open shooter in the corner.  The Phoenix caught fire as he looked like he was in practice, draining 5-8 from deep, along with a nasty fast break dunk and two pump fakes to send defenders flying by and followed by a one-dribble pull-up that hit bottom.  I agree with Gil McGregor, this is the most confident I’ve ever seen Butler.

  • When Posey wasn’t posting smaller guards and forcing doubles or fouls, he was drilling threes.  He sank 3-4.
  • I almost didn’t mention it, because I know it will shock you, but here goes.  Sean Marks missed a couple long jumpers.  I know!  I’ll give you a minute . . .
  • The broadcast made me a little sad tonight, which is pretty unusual for a broadcast by the Hornet’s Home crew..  PJ Brown unequivocally said his NBA career was over, Jannero Pargo showed up and brought back fond remembrances of his snaggle-toothed grin, Bob Licht refused to let the steals streak go by insisting on repeating over and over that Paul had steals in 109 of Paul’s last 108 games, and Gil couldn’t stop trashing the Wizards in general and Antawn Jamison’s defense in particular.  In order of those four things: I’m sad to see a class-act hang them up, I wish Pargo the best, Let it go, Bob, Let it go, Gil.
  • Mike James had a nice game, and was dead set on trying to win.  He played a good passing game, shot well, and wasn’t a pushover on defense, finishing with 16 points, 7 assists, and fouling out due to his aggressive defense on Paul.  It’s a shame he rarely plays with that fire anymore – especially defensively.
  • Tyson ended with eleven points and eleven rebounds, but he was getting after it out there.  No less than four times he dug hard defensive rebounds out of the mitts of two Wizards, and generally did his best to control the glass.  It was nice to see.  Oh, and you’ll see that reverse alley-oop again – on SportsCenter.
  • Daniels clearly needs to step into a three to hit it.  All of the deep shots he has hit for the Hornets come after he takes one long step and launches with his whole body.  He rushed a couple at the end of the shot clock when he first came over the Hornets, and took one tonight from the corner, and none of those came even remotely close to going in.
  • Morris Peterson was the first sub off the bench.  He had some nice passing, some nice rebounds, but missed both shots badly and ended up with only seven minutes of burn.  I’d like to see him be given more of a chance to get into rhythm again. 
  • In other news, Devin Brown did not play a minute.  Certain members of the Hornet’s blogging community may now put down the razor blades and get out of the bathtub.

Welcome back from abroad, Niall.

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