Paul Hype

Published: July 4, 2010

I can’t understand the Chris Paul Hype.  He is a fine athlete.  He may have been ruined by Byron Scott’s Nagin-style non-coaching:  “I let Chris do what he wants to.”

Kobe Bryant is by no means my favorite player, but he is very good–and he does know how to play on a team instead of trying to be a team.  That’s why the Lakers can win.  LeBron James is a pretty good team, but he is never going to win a ring. 

As a player, Chris Paul has a miniature LeBron James.  He seems to be a much better–nicer, less arrogant–man than James.  And he could be a great point guard.  But not the way he plays.

The Hornet offense is pathetic.  It consists of four men standing around, twiddling their thumbs waiting to see which one of them gets to shoot.  Paul dribbles around for seventeen to twenty seconds, and eventually either takes a shot or passes to one of the standing statues out on the periphery.  Whoever gets the ball quickly shoots, before the clock hits twenty-four. 

Paul gets lots of assists because he makes the only pass there is time for.  Nobody else gets an assist because there is never enough time for a second pass.

And because we play with four men standing around outside the Paul dribble zone, we never get any offensive rebounds.

When Paul was out last season, we played good five-man basketball.  Darren Collison can run a team–as a team.  He scores, passes, makes everybody play.  He keeps players and the ball in motion.  When he is in, everybody gets assists, and we get offensive rebounds.  Even Peja S. got rebounds!

Collison is like Rajan Rondo, who runs the veteran Celtics–as a team.  They play basketball–and win lots of games.  Rondo scores, gets lots of assists, gets rebounds–and so do five or six or seven other guys.

Let’s let Paul go–to Cleveland if that’s where he wants to be.  With Scott and James.  Scott may let him “do what he wants to do,” but James won’t.  Paul’s job will be to bring the ball down the court and give it to LeBron.

Meanwhile, we can have Collison running a team built on David West, and Marcus Thornton.  Emeka Okafor will be better if he has another big man to help:  can Stojakovic manage that job?  If not, we need another big man.  For what we will get, trading Paul, we should get a pretty good one–especially with all the Paul-hype playing.

Let’s have a Hornet team.  Much better players than Paul have tried to be one-man teams, and failed. 


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