Hornets Waive DJ Strawberry

Published: October 20, 2010

The New Orleans Hornets announced today that they have waived guard D.J. Strawberry, leaving their roster at 15. It’s unclear if this will be the last cut, but now Monty Williams has the option of keeping everyone if he so chooses.

Strawberry played in four preseason games for the Hornets, averaging 3.0 points and 1.0 rebounds in 6.8 minutes per game. He shot only 30% from the floor and didn’t manage to make a three pointer the entire time. It was presumed that if he made the team it would be because of his defense, but apparently he didn’t show enough for Monty to keep him on the squad.

The remaining roster-

pg- Paul, Green, Jarrels

sg- Belinelli, Thornton

sf- Ariza, Peja, Pondexter, *Joe Alexander

pf- West, Smith, Pops, *Joe Alexander

c- Okafor, Gray, Mbenga


  1. winze

    October 20, 2010 at 11:35 pm

    At least we brought in some younger talent to test out this pre-season and it effectively cost us nothing. Better than just signing a vet and being stuck with them for the whole season even if you know they are going to suck early on.

    Plus it created competition for roster spots and players got a chance to prove themselves. IMO D.J and Mustafa were gone the minute Jerrells was signed.

    Green is looking good so far from a defensive point of view and as long as he can do a serviceable job as a backup guard then this team is starting to look ok in terms of the backcourt.

    Alexander must be showing something on the practice court that isn’t being seen by the public to be on the list still, unless Monty’s love of project SFs is keeping him around.

    At this stage there is still enough pieces there to have a solid roster for this season or for a trade to be done to bring in some good talent to put around CP3.

    The way i see the roster atm, only CP3 and maybe Ariza are safe, everyone else on that roster could be traded.

  2. 42

    October 21, 2010 at 12:13 am

    i agree about getting the bodies into camp. Kudos, Demps.

    Based on the depth chart laid out here, Thornton will be seeing some time. There could be a rotation where Green and Jerralls split the time with Belinelli on the bench, but makes more sense for Marcus to get some minutes.

    Alexander is just dangling out there. I don’t see how he sticks around with the other 14, everyone getting guaranteed deals.

    So, assuming that’s right . . . who’s leaving? Pondexter to D-League? That’d justify his existence. Peja? If so, what do we get back and how do we make room? If we send out Peja at $15, plus another piece, we’d need to get back two guys that are pretty pricey. It’d seem like we’d be better off getting more people back than we sent out, which requires empty roster spots. Going into the regular season with 14 instead of 15, to me, says alot about what is to come.

  3. pinoyballah

    October 21, 2010 at 12:43 am

    just an idea, but do you guys think that move to get rid of strawberry makes a similar statement to thorton that we are commited to him as it did to paul when we got rid of collison?

    • winze

      October 21, 2010 at 12:58 am

      no it doesn’t, it just means he didn’t perform well enough to win a roster spot and Jerrells is getting a shot now.

      Just means that Green did better than him.

      • 42

        October 21, 2010 at 2:10 am

        Green has a guaranteed deal, so it doesn’t necessarily mean that Green did better, just that it wasn’t worth signing Strawberry given that he didn’t bring enough to the table to justify paying him to play and Green to ride the pine even more than he will as the 2nd 1.

        I think it means we need to have confidence in Thornton; I don’t think it means that we do or do not have that confidence.

  4. F******

    October 21, 2010 at 3:40 am

    They will cut Alexander before the season starts, it’s a no-brainer! Maybe they even cut Mensah-B., too, and go on with 13 guys. There is no need for him, unless two guys get injured.

    • rm

      October 21, 2010 at 6:13 am

      Why would you do that?

    • rm

      October 21, 2010 at 6:21 am

      I can’t see how you are going to get more out of Gray and Mbenga than out of Pops. Pops can cover the 5 as well as play 4. I think that he also offers something else to Smith. Smith has played well in pre season and is probably a better all round player than Pops but Pops even though didn’t play great yesterday has many double-doubles off the bench as he you saw Monday.

      I would always have Pops in my team. Though I am biased.

      • F******

        October 21, 2010 at 7:31 am

        – save money
        – tighten a rotation
        – there is no why he can play center
        – open another roster spot
        – getting rid of a player who was signed for camp anyway

      • winze

        October 21, 2010 at 8:18 am

        Gray can only be cut if traded i believe, so that is why, plus you can’t teach height and size which even if he doesn’t know how to use it properly he has. Plus he showed last year in actual games during the regular season that he can fill a decent bench role.

        Pops and Mbenga will rarely see anything over 10 minutes a game so doesn’t really matter which of them we keep, whoever is the easier contract to dump and whoever will be cheaper is probably all it comes down to.

        Smith has shown he will be a good backup PF (please don’t put him at center, if Bosh was able to abuse him that badly most of the backup centers in the league will not much much difficulty being more effective than him in the paint) and he deserves minutes behind D West.

      • L_Reazy

        October 21, 2010 at 11:46 am

        I have to agree with you ‘rm’ …

        Pops is better than Gray and Mbenga. How many double-doubles have they produced during preseason compared to Pops’ 1?

        As a matter of fact, how many double-doubles have they produced if you combine their stats?


      • TopherPrice

        October 21, 2010 at 2:03 pm

        I think it is more likely that if there is another cut it will be Alexander.

        @rm remember you can’t ask why would they keep Gray over Pops because Gray is guaranteed this year and next year has a player option for another guaranteed year. So effectively if the Hornets went to him and said we are going to cut you, he would say well then I am picking up my player option, so cut a check for that other $1.2 million in addition to the $1.03 you owe me for this year. Bad business, no matter how much he might be inferior to Pops. Now Mbenga is a different story, as he may be non-guaranteed, but you don’t bring a guy in mid-preseason if you are not planing on having him somewhere on your roster.

        I still think Pops is safe as we are at roster level, he gives us injury protection at PF (out thinnest of positions), and he has shown higher upside than any of our other non-guaranteed guys.

      • rm

        October 21, 2010 at 2:10 pm

        I am slowly picking up the business side of the NBA…. it’s a mine field!

        Educate me more here. 12 can be suited right. The rest sit watching in the stands with a bag of chips!

      • TopherPrice

        October 21, 2010 at 3:07 pm

        That is correct, 12 on the bench in uniform. The rest will be in suits on the bench looking like half a bolt of fabric hanging off of coat hangers. Men that big always look funny in a suit to me. I say that, and I am 6′ 5″ as well. LOL

  5. LeoneL

    October 21, 2010 at 10:18 am

    So is it Jerrels or Jarrells or Jaryls or Jerrals? I can’t cheer for him if I don’t know him.

  6. JCS

    October 21, 2010 at 10:57 am

    ¡Ay, caramba Joe Gerrity! Of all the players we could of cut, traded, or sent to the D-League, Strawberry was not on my pick. Demps must have some master plan going on that we don’t know about. I just hope it works.

  7. L_Reazy

    October 21, 2010 at 11:31 am

    From a different post regarding trading Marcus Thornton:

    ‘winze’, that’s just it … I never stated that Prince was the answer … it was more about brainstorming and figuring out what Marcus Thornton’s value is considered to be, being that I keep reading that he is the key to keeping Chris Paul. If anyone thinks that is true then the Hornets are in more trouble than we thought. “Marcus Thornton is the key to keeping Chris Paul happy?” No, I think keeping Marcus Thornton is the key to keeping ‘HiMyNameisSteven’ happy, apparently. Tayshaun Prince isn’t washed up, but he isn’t the answer either, I agree. However, he is better than Marcus Thornton and Emeka Okafor! Nevertheless, every transaction is just a stepping stone to getting better. So, one trade wouldn’t put the Hornets in the Finals anyway.

    In regards to Emeka Okafor … anyone remember the game at Toronto last season when Chris Bosh destroyed Okafor the same way ‘HiMyNameisSteven
    ‘ mentions how Jason Smith got destroyed by him? What’s the difference? Point is, Emeka Okafor leaves a lot to be desired, and in my opinion he isn’t that much better than a back-up BIG-Man. Jason Smith is comparable to Okafor, and if Okafor was traded the Hornets wouldn’t lose anything at that position.

    Like I stated before, ‘HiMyNameisSteven’ you started the insults with me, because you got sensitive about my harmless trade question about MT5. Why are you so enamored by Marcus Thornton? I’m glad your not the GM, because MT5 would be untouchable, huh?

    For other ‘posters’ … what would be a good trade for Marcus Thornton? … and Emeka for that matter?


    • nikkoewan

      October 21, 2010 at 1:16 pm

      i’m sorry but i don’t believe Okafor isn’t that much better than a back up big.

    • Joe P

      October 21, 2010 at 5:43 pm

      Okafor maybe should be a back-up, but on a really good team. He’s an above average NBA starting center. He punches in and goes to work every game. Staying healthy is worth a lot. Unless it’s an upgrade at starting center, I don’t see any good trades for Ok. Who would the Hornets start? Gray? Really? Now sure, I’d take Granger and Hibbert for Ok and West, but that’s just silly talk.

  8. L_Reazy

    October 21, 2010 at 11:38 am

    I was really pulling for DJ Strawberry … I like players who play ‘D’, are fast, and athletic.

    Why is Joe Alexander still with the team? Wooooow …. he hasn’t earned anything.

    …but, I guess if Marcus Thornton can play terrible and stay on the roster … why can’t Alexander? According to some ‘posters’, -like Marcus Thornton- maybe Joe Alexander is another key to keeping Chris Paul happy / a Hornet … lol!


  9. Caleb

    October 21, 2010 at 11:54 am

    Are you seriously comparing Thornton to Alexander L Reazy?

    Thornton had an incredible rookie year, and has had a down PRESEASON.

    Alexander has never produced in this league. There’s a huge freaking difference there.

    • L_Reazy

      October 21, 2010 at 12:13 pm

      I raise another question then … and no I’m not comparing the two, just being sarcastic! …

      Should we base what a player has done in 2010-2011 to what they did a season ago if it’s two different performances?

      How much time should Marcus Thornton be given to develop?

      How good will Marcus Thornton be?


      • nikkoewan

        October 21, 2010 at 1:29 pm

        “should we base what a player has done in 2010 – 2011 to what they did a season ago if it’s two different performances?”

        –> Yes. Where else can we compare results? It’s a law in economics where forecasting today’s prices is based on past prices. That’s the same with here. Although I accept that Thornton’s rookie season might be a fluke. You just don’t forget how to play. He may not score as much. But he still knows how to shoot. That much is clear.

        “How much time should Marcus Thornton be given to develop?”

        –> If allowed, give him until his 3rd year. If by his 3rd year he is still the same player then by no means trade him. Usually, 3rd year is when players really start to kick into high gear.

        “How good will Marcus Thornton be?”

        –> Good enough to be a 3rd banana in a triumvirate, i believe. The problem is finding that 2nd banana, and giving him time to get it. He’s defense is suspect, but he’s trying. Give him time. I will, I hope CP3 does too.

  10. hewhorocks

    October 21, 2010 at 12:32 pm

    To address some things said in the thread, Okafor is a back up center, if your center is a top five performer in the league. If your just looking for a center with above average production then Okafor will workfor you. (Contracts aside though for big-men he hasnt been grossly overpaid.) As far as Bosh destroying Okafor last season…hmm I remember a game http://www.hoopsstats.com/basketball/fantasy/nba/boxscores/toronto-raptors-vs-new-orleans-hornets/2009-12-20/10/28 where Bosh had a +3 eff over West but Okafor had a +1 over Bargnani. Okafor had a double double that game (with an assist but only 2-5 from the line.)

    Bosh did not have a great game by his standards. I remember a game where Bosh was held to roughly his season average game, while Okafor’s Eff was roughly 20% high than his season average. November had a different result http://www.hoopsstats.com/basketball/fantasy/nba/boxscores/toronto-raptors-vs-new-orleans-hornets/2009-11-06/10/28 but with a starting line up including Jullian wright and Morris Peterson Bosh scored his season average but didnt hit his average in rebounds (odd considering the Hornets rebounding woes.)

    Smith will do well backing up West but the knock against his play against bosh was how the points occured. When someone not noted for being a physical banger type 4 (Bosh) out muscles him in the low post we can infer that playing him at the 5 spot (even in a back-up role) should be limited to special situations even if his height is listed at 7ft. Thats not a knock against him as a player just that he does not seem to match up well against large physical low post players in a way that would want you to go to him first when spelling Okafor.

    Still to the topic, Strawberry looked ok at points (the few we saw) but he needs playing time to continue to develop and thats something he wouldnt get as the 15th man on the bench here anyway. I wish him luck.

    • L_Reazy

      October 21, 2010 at 6:05 pm

      I can respect that!

      Jason Smith has got to hit the weights.


  11. 42

    October 21, 2010 at 12:32 pm

    One enormous difference between the risk of Alexander and the risk of Marcus is that you have Marcus on the books and you don’t have Alexander on the books. You don’t have to accept that risk, whatever the risk of Marcus not being good is, big, small, goldilocks, whatever, he’s in the mix until the end of the year or we deal him.

    If we want to assess the value of Marcus, let’s wait a month and see how he’s playing. Again, this dude has dealt with more change in a shorter amount of time than anyone on the team. Even if he is this preseason forever, we won’t know that until we give him some time.

    And he’s better than that. A little more of mama’s cornbread and he’ll be just fine.

    I do love that little dude.

  12. Stefan

    October 21, 2010 at 1:26 pm

    I’m just awaiting the time I log on to this site to read this blog title:

    Hornets trade [Insert Thonrton, Okafor, and other players here] for [Insert a bunch of players here] from the [Insert Team names here]

    I think it’s coming :/ & I don’t want to see Mek leave!!

  13. 42

    October 21, 2010 at 2:50 pm

    Totally off-topic. Complete non sequitur. And now for something completely different.

    This isn’t really new or news, but I hadn’t seen it before . . .



    I can’t help it, I love puns.

    • TopherPrice

      October 21, 2010 at 3:10 pm

      It is from Bob Licht. Remember my drinking game? All based on him and Gil’s desire to shove more puns per minute into a game broadcast than there are vests in a season of Blossom.

      *I did find it quit witty, however. HA*

      • 42

        October 21, 2010 at 3:22 pm

        I met Gil at Casino Night and was giddy. We have some mutual friends (my former advisor) which helped break the ice, but I told him I love his puns. He was quite happy. We have a great picture of him smiling/laughing and me grinning uncomfortably/nervously.

        It’s easy to choose 870 over any tv broadcast of the Saints, but man, it’s tough with our radio and tv guys. I usually do TV when available and radio elsewhere, including the Arena.

        We are truly lucky to have the teams we have. And by we I mean me.

  14. winze

    October 21, 2010 at 5:36 pm

    I find it almost laughable that people are implying either directly or indirectly in a lot of their comments that Smith > Okafor…. how on earth did you come to that conclusion? Because Smith had better stats in games that Okafor had less minutes than him?

    How did you even come close to thinking that Smith = Starting Center in the NBA?

    • L_Reazy

      October 21, 2010 at 6:24 pm

      I’ve followed Jason Smith for some time, and I know what he’s capable of doing at 7-foot. He’s been injured a lot, and hasn’t been able to showcase.

      Okafor has extreme limitations, and we all know that he ain’t getting any better.

      Thats why I said, in regards to skill-set Jason Smith is equal to Emeka Okafor, if not better.

      Anyone can see this by watching them play. Smith has more fluidity in his game than Okafor. Just my opinion though.


    • L_Reazy

      October 21, 2010 at 6:26 pm

      Jason Smith isn’t a starting center, but Okafor isn’t one eother either … so I just figured what the heck!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.