The Hornets beat the Mavericks

By:
Published: January 15, 2009

That was an excellent game.  Both teams brought it offensively, and were doing what they did best.  Things kept happening and I kept thinking “I need to remember that” and then something else would happen and I’d forget about the previous item.

This game, however, was all about adjustments, and the Hornets adjusted and  won. 

Observations:

  • Dirk Nowitzki wasn’t really interested in driving too much in the first quarter, instead he’d crossover twice to get a rhythm and then fire over West, hitting almost every time.  West adjusted in the second, slapping at the ball when Dirk tried to get the dribble rhythm going, and simply bodying him up.  Dirk had to adjust and put more arc or pass off, and his shot stopped falling.  By the third, after West blocked him, Dirk was actually fading to fire.  In the fourth, he decided to drive, and Paul and Stojakovic started attacking his dribble.  Four turnovers.  Game.
  • Dirk was not the only player the Hornets adjusted to and slowed down.  Jason Terry was burying us in the first with Rasual trying to track him.  Butler just didn’t have the footspeed and had real trouble with the Dampier picks.  In the second half, however, Paul took Terry, and his speed was a decisive advantage.  Terry still got some nice shots, but almost all were either transition threes or when Paul was forced onto someone else on a switch.  By the way, Jason Terry always lights us up.  I really like the cut of his jib.

  • In the third, Antoine Wright hit Dampier lumbering down the lane for an alley-oop.  After watching Chandler soar and put those down all night, it’s kinda like watching a Volvo wagon take part in a Nascar race.  Sure it’ll finish, but no one wants to see that.
  • Yes, we were outscored in the second quarter.  But only by one point.
  • I really liked the Dallas announcers.  Solid jobs all around.
  • That fast-break alley-oop in the third quarter was the fastest full-court play I’ve ever seen.  Posey inbounded off a made basket, hit Paul in-stride at half court, who made it to the three-point line before firing up the alley-oop to Chandler.  Two seconds off the clock, and only because the timekeeper was too surprised to stop it fast enough.
  • I’d like to thank Jason Kidd for his efforts.  His shooting was disastrous for the Mavericks, he choked in crunch time, and Peja came out smoking because Kidd was guarding him and couldn’t stay up with him through the simplest of picks.  It was embarrassing.
  • Peja missed a few shots in the third, but overall he was exactly what we needed.  Spaced the floor, hit some nice curls, and generally made it hard for them to collapse on West or Paul.
  • That was a clean block by Hilton Armstrong on Bass.  Clean, damnit.
  • For all the derision we shower on Devin Brown, the guy had a good game tonight.  He even hit a pair of threes in the first half that kept that second quarter from getting away from us.  He was active defensively, and though he had a few terrible-looking plays, was effective, particularly in transition.  It’s games like this that makes you understand why Byron keeps putting him back into the rotation.
  • Tyson had a nice game.  Five offensive rebounds, fourteen total.  Eight points on alley-oops, two on putback and two terrible six-foot hookshots I shouldn’t mention but will because they were so horrific.  An airball right and a hook shot that hit the side of the backboard?  Ouch.  Anyways, his energy was up, his picks were hard, and his fouls were limited.  Just a nice game.
  • Paul had 33 points, 10 rebounds, 11 assists, seven steals and two turnovers as he almost captured the rare and elusive quadruble-double.  You could see he was ready to go from the first quarter as he kept running the ball down the throat of the Mavericks every chance he got.  As a result, the Hornets had 24 fast break points to the Mavericks 8.  Nice.

Night.

0 comments