Game On: Jazz @ Hornets

By:
Published: December 17, 2010

Matchup: Jazz (18-8) @ Hornets (15-10)
Off Efficiency: Hornets 101.4 (21st), Jazz 106.4 (11th)
Def Efficiency: Hornets 99.3(4th), Jazz 103.2 (12th)

Pace: Hornets 92.3 (27th), Jazz 93.6 (19th)

What to watch:

  1. As always, all eyes will be on the Paul vs Williams match up. Deron is one of the few players in the league that has an advantage over Paul (note this does not mean that he’s a better player) due to his size and skill set. I’ve long expected Paul to as some point have a big game against Deron, and with his best supporting cast in years this might be the best chance he will have to even the score a little bit. The Hornets need to stop Deron from executing the pick and roll with Paul Millsap to do that.
  2. Marcus Thornton. After leading the comeback against Sacramento, it’s going to be interesting to see how Thornton is used. Has he turned the corner and proven himself to Monty? Or was that game just that, a game?
  3. Rebounding. The Hornets are a better rebounding team than the Jazz. Most of the time we know what we are going to get out of David West and Emeka Okafor, but it’s Trevor Ariza who really holds the key tonight. He needs to do a better job boxing out on the weak side to stop the Jazz from getting offensive boards. Despite their poor overall rebounding, they are adequate on the offensive glass.

In the attendance world, the Hornets Business Council has pledged to buy 200,000 dollars worth of tickets to boost attendance. The Save Our Hornets Foundation is sending another group of boy scouts to the game today, and in order to beat  the lease the team has to average 14,970 tickets  sold for the next 11 games. I’m still hearing that Charter and CST have a deal done.

Mehmet Okur is set to make his season debut, coming off of an injury.He’s going to come off the bench and is only expected to play about 5-10 minutes. Don’t expect him to do much, but still he adds another big body for the Hornets to deal with.

Notes from the arena

Hornets are 10-3 at home.

Utah has won four of the last five in New Orleans.

Pops, Banks, and Aaron Gray are inactive. Pops is still nursing an elbow infection.

69 Comments

  1. QueenBee

    December 17, 2010 at 2:28 pm

    Of course, once again, a player that has been injured is talking of making his debut against the Hornets.

  2. hewhorocks

    December 17, 2010 at 2:29 pm

    Prediction: Q-pon and Thornton get some P-T tonight….with Charlotte reps intently watching.

  3. QueenBee

    December 17, 2010 at 2:32 pm

    “hortonhomers Hornets’ Stat of the Day: Only Minnesota has commited more fouls than Utah this season. NewOrleans might live at the line tonight!
    16 minutes ago via Twitter for BlackBerry®”

    I’m willing to bet the Hornets won’t live at the line tonight. Lately we’ve been treated like a road team in our own house.

    • TopherPrice

      December 17, 2010 at 4:50 pm

      Not that it would matter. As it seems the only people who get to the line are Ariza and Okafor who are 66% and 54% FT percentage this season, it is going to hardly help. Hell David West is down to 75% from his normal 85-90% rate. CP3, Marcus (yeah right), or Marco are our only chances for FT helping. Marco can’t get to the basket without the ball being stripped pre-foul, and Marcus could get stabbed and then shot in the paint and not get a whistle.

      Let’s hope it doesn’t come down to FT. I feel like a Memphis Tigers in the Calipari era fan right now.

      • QueenBee

        December 17, 2010 at 5:31 pm

        I remember in summer league it looked like Quincy could get to the line but he may not get much PT tonight.

      • TopherPrice

        December 17, 2010 at 5:49 pm

        Yeah, he is shooting around 60% as well. Unfortunately, in Basketball unlike a Meatloaf song 2 out of 3 is bad.

  4. QueenBee

    December 17, 2010 at 2:33 pm

    Or so it seems.

  5. Stew

    December 17, 2010 at 3:13 pm

    I’m starting to wonder if the NBA secretely advised the refs to be cautious when calling fouls on Hornets opponents as to not generate any cries of “the NBA is protecting its team!” lol

    • QueenBee

      December 17, 2010 at 3:22 pm

      Would you be surprised? LOL.

      • Stew

        December 17, 2010 at 3:25 pm

        You’re right. No, I wouldn’t.

  6. Michael McNamara

    December 17, 2010 at 3:17 pm

    Big game IMO- as much as the 26th game could be a big game.

    Some very winnable games coming up and Hornets can get to 21 wins before their next loss if they win this one. March is absolutely brutal, so every win in December is huge.

    I have a feeling Paul/West/Okafor play Williams/Milsap/Jefferson to a draw and game will come down to wings and bench play. Need at least 2 of those guys (Ariza, Belly, Green, MT5) to have good games.

  7. QueenBee

    December 17, 2010 at 3:25 pm

    The banner above still lists the Kings.

    • Stew

      December 17, 2010 at 3:27 pm

      It’s gonna be hard seeing that banner go.

      • QueenBee

        December 17, 2010 at 4:11 pm

        We can keep the picture though right? Just change the name of the opposing team.

  8. NOEngineer

    December 17, 2010 at 3:34 pm

    Utah is one of those teams that consistently commit a ton of fouls, hoping that on some (most) nights the refs get tired and just let them get away with it. Boston is another. Both Paul and West have been thrown off their game more than most when this type of play occurs, which is a big reason why our success against Utah has been limited. I would like to see Gray and Mbenga both activated so we can foul a lot while bothering their shots, with Pops, Banks, and Anderson riding the pine. I hope we avoid small-ball and instead play big-ball. Show me a line-up of West, Smith, Mbenga, Paul, and Thornton during this game. Two pick-n-pop options, a rim-protecting center, and scoring on the wings.

    Go Hornets!!

    • m_W

      December 17, 2010 at 5:43 pm

      I’m not a big fan of West and Smith together. Smith can’t play the 5, and West doesn’t like to. (But if push comes to shove, put WEST at the 5, not Smith.) But to play them BOTH with Mbenga? That’s crazy. No way Smith or West can play the 3.

      Nonetheless, I would very much like to see Buckets and CP3 run together.

  9. Go Blue

    December 17, 2010 at 3:57 pm

    Finally a home game in HD!! The Hornets better hand the Jazz a lost tonight. Hope Monty gives Marcus some minutes, we really going to need him tonight. And CP3 to play as aggressive as he was in the 2nd half of the Kings game. I don’t want those DWill worshipers flooding the site again.

    • QueenBee

      December 17, 2010 at 4:13 pm

      Thing is, Chris Paul has had good games against Deron Williams. Can’t really say the same about CP’s teammates against their counterparts though. I’ve seen Deron Williams in foul trouble only to go take a seat on the bench and the Jazz still basically keep on trucking. Not saying his backups are as good as he is but things don’t go haywire when he takes a seat. That says something about the Jazz’s depth.

  10. JCS

    December 17, 2010 at 4:34 pm

    Has anyone voted Deron for the All-Star team? I’ve voted numerous times for various players, but always selecting three Hornets. This was my last vote before Joke’em Noah got hurt:

    EAST
    D. West
    Durantula
    CP3
    Spicey Curry
    Okafor

    WEST
    Amare
    Granger
    Flash
    Rose
    Noah

    I take it all the MT5 stans will be writing him in as a guard with CP3.

    • TopherPrice

      December 17, 2010 at 4:56 pm

      I like it, I have much the same on all of mine.

      West
      Durantula
      CP3
      Kobe
      Okafor

      LBJ
      Amare
      Flash
      Darren (just because!)
      Sing-Song Time

      • JCS

        December 17, 2010 at 5:22 pm

        Kobme, LeBail, and Sing-Song Time will make it with or without our votes, b/c they’re so popular. Danny, Darren, and CrabLegz McGee probably won’t.
        IMO, a gang of good players are going to be left out this year because the talent pool runs deep. Maybe $tern should consider doing it NHL style and let team captains pick and choose who they want from either conference. That’d be sweet.

      • TopherPrice

        December 17, 2010 at 5:33 pm

        Yeah that would be sweet. Crab Legz doesn’t deserve it. I can’t do it, he is just too much of a wreck still. Granger is just tragic, he is stuck behind some major talent. Kind of like West in the PF for the W.C.

        They really do need to do something about the voting. Or just allow the captains as voted by the top 10 vote getting players in each conference pick the starting 5 regardless of votes.

        That way the Chinese get to see Yao and any other crappy Rockets player they know of, yet they don’t get to start over player that actually have played during the year.

      • JCS

        December 17, 2010 at 5:58 pm

        I didn’t want to mention the X-Factor (Chinese voting) but the reality is it makes a huge difference. Last year, Aaron Brooks and Tracy McGrady were projected to be starters! Not only did that go against every stat in the book, it lacked common sense.

    • okijeff

      December 17, 2010 at 5:09 pm

      I just did. Some picks ’cause they deserve it. Some just ’cause I like ’em.

      East:
      D. Rose and D. Wade
      K. Garnett and Shaq
      Amare

      West:
      CP3 and Manu
      D. West and B. Griffin
      Mek. — Where would I be if I couldn’t see Mek getting it stuffed every night? lol

      And my write in: MT5 : )

      • JCS

        December 17, 2010 at 5:28 pm

        @okijeff

        I vote every year and it seems like $tern always puts rookies on the ballot despite that they only play in the Rookie-Sophomore game. I’d love to see Griff and my boy Wall play in the game, but I don’t think they’re even allowed to suit up.

  11. QueenBee

    December 17, 2010 at 5:18 pm

    Hornets’ color analyst Gerry Vaillancourt tweets…

    “Hornets vs a Jazz team that ave 24 att’s “at the rim” top 5/ hornets have hard time vs teams that attacks with weakside actions
    half a minute ago via Twitter for BlackBerry® “

  12. QueenBee

    December 17, 2010 at 5:22 pm

  13. QueenBee

    December 17, 2010 at 5:35 pm

    OT: But a heads up anyways…

    “NBATV Exclusive interviews with @Oneandonlycp3, Derrick Rose, and @dwadeofficial on One on One with Ahmad Rashad, Dec. 23 at 7pm ET on #NBATV!
    10:49 AM Dec 16th via web
    Retweeted by BrittanyHornets “

  14. tyler

    December 17, 2010 at 6:13 pm

    Do anybody think we need another trade cause i do.

  15. QueenBee

    December 17, 2010 at 6:18 pm

    From Licht’s twitter…

    Hornets’ MontyWilliams was addressing questions from media about why Thornton doesn’t play more. He wants MT to buy into TEAM concept better
    15 minutes ago via web

    Hornets’ Monty Williams w/the line of the night : “I don’t wake up in the AM thinking of ways to make Marcus(Thornton’s) life miserable…”
    16 minutes ago via web

    Team concept. Is he saying Thornton is all about getting his? Is he saying Thornton thinks it’s all about him?

  16. QueenBee

    December 17, 2010 at 6:48 pm

    Gil McGregor should’ve hit David Locke in his mouth with his microphone.

  17. 42

    December 17, 2010 at 6:49 pm

    I’ll post it soon in News.

    CST on Charter with Sports View starting 1/1/11.

  18. Go Blue

    December 17, 2010 at 7:06 pm

    Noooooooooo I’m stuck with Utah’s broadcasters!!!! Guess I’ll be watching on mute all game.

    • peronas

      December 17, 2010 at 7:15 pm

      I thought the same thing when I turned it on.

  19. peronas

    December 17, 2010 at 7:41 pm

    Thornton sparking things off the bench!

  20. Hornet Seantonio

    December 17, 2010 at 7:53 pm

    Hate to be “that guy” but Thornton making Monty look silly

  21. Hornet Seantonio

    December 17, 2010 at 8:01 pm

    Oh and Trevor said “here’s lookin at you haters” =)

  22. George

    December 17, 2010 at 8:03 pm

    Paul’s jumpshot seems to be falling short a lot more than I am used to

  23. peronas

    December 17, 2010 at 8:07 pm

    Now please please please do not collapse in the second half.

  24. 42

    December 17, 2010 at 8:08 pm

    I’m trying to just remember the Spurs game and contain my glee . . . but it’s nice to just bust this myth of invincibility of the Jazz against the Hornets.

    17 pts at the half . . . I’d rather 16, if you know what I mean . . .

  25. George

    December 17, 2010 at 8:18 pm

    Marcus needs more minutes in the second half if we want to keep putting points uo, he is +13 at the half.

    • George

      December 17, 2010 at 8:18 pm

      *up

  26. ChrisTrewdotCom

    December 17, 2010 at 8:23 pm

    Guys, I am watching this game AS IT HAPPENS! The team is 1-3 when I do that.

    • Okijeff

      December 17, 2010 at 8:28 pm

      Stop watching. ; )

    • peronas

      December 17, 2010 at 8:29 pm

      I would like to respectfully request you stop watching the game 😉

  27. cadillacjacques

    December 17, 2010 at 8:27 pm

    anyone notice we started the game goin to the opposite side of the court than we normally do

  28. peronas

    December 17, 2010 at 8:40 pm

    Wow the Jazz announcers are trying out every excuse as to why they are down so far… No respect for the Hornets

  29. George

    December 17, 2010 at 8:50 pm

    Jason Smith with the block!

  30. peronas

    December 17, 2010 at 8:56 pm

    OH MY!!!!!!!

  31. peronas

    December 17, 2010 at 8:58 pm

    Thornton has me grinning from ear to ear right now!

  32. mbdtf

    December 17, 2010 at 8:59 pm

    Never change this banner.

  33. George

    December 17, 2010 at 9:00 pm

    I hope Thornton never gets traded from this team.

  34. Michael McNamara

    December 17, 2010 at 9:03 pm

    Wondering if Monty ever gets an credit for this long term? ANY chance this has motivated MT5 and/or humbled him?

    If so, I am willing to have sacrificed a few early regular season games to get a 100% focused Thornton

    • 42

      December 17, 2010 at 9:12 pm

      Marcus’ issues last year could be tied to things like confidence and focus.

      His defense is clearly improved from last year, so credit Monty with that.

      The timing is probably the issue for most. Why not trying him more when the offensive woes were apparent? That’s a legit beef. I’ll chalk it up to Monty being a rookie and won’t take him to the shed for it.

      • Michael McNamara

        December 17, 2010 at 9:19 pm

        we will never know the full story from Monty’s point of view, but who cares now? As much as I loved Thornton last year, this is the best I have ever seen him play ALL AROUND.

        Setting up teammates, pulling the ball out at crucial times, hungry on defense.

        If this keeps up, all we need is one big.

        By the way- lost in all this- how confident did Ariza look tonight against AK47??

      • 42

        December 17, 2010 at 9:25 pm

        I liked him driving at the basket. He looked like a little bench time might have done him some good . . .

    • peronas

      December 17, 2010 at 9:32 pm

      I’ll give Monty the benefit of the doubt that coming out of preseason and early on Marcus didn’t show him enough to earn playing time. An I think it would be naive to think that Monty hasn’t had an impact on Marcus and challenged him to grow his game.

      Like 42 said though the timing is where Monty takes flak, mainly because what he was trotting out in his place wasn’t getting it done, and changing things up and giving Thornton a shot wasn’t gonna be any worse. Also, while it’s fair for the most part to evaluate players by what the coach is seeing in practice, practice will still never be the same as actual meaningful game time and a player needs some run in actual games to be comfortable executing and being a part of the team game when it matters. You can practice it all you want but the speed and variance of an actual game isn’t easily replicated. So throwing Marcus out there for just a couple of minutes then pulling him at the first mistake or only throwing him out there in garbage time isn’t going to help his confidence or comfort level with the team.

      But Monty is a rookie coach so he’s going to have growing pains as he gets acclimated so I wont call for his head.

    • m-W

      December 17, 2010 at 10:37 pm

      There’s just nothing, nothing, that has ever indicated Marcus shouldn’t play heavy minutes. I can forgive Monty for being dumb, but he was being dumb.

  35. HiMyNameisSteven

    December 17, 2010 at 9:09 pm

    anyone who ahs ever doubted my comments on marcus… suck it

  36. George

    December 17, 2010 at 9:16 pm

    The crowd loves Thornton, even the Jazz announcers know it, saying they cheer more when he makes a shot than anyone else on the team.

  37. Go Blue

    December 17, 2010 at 9:16 pm

    I’m guessing there won’t be a flood of Jazz fans on the site after this game -grinning-

    • 42

      December 17, 2010 at 9:24 pm

      Why? They love Deron and his weird mer-man looking self. They don’t just blow hot air when then win and stay silent when they lose. The stick by their guy.

  38. 42

    December 17, 2010 at 9:23 pm

    Chouest better be grinning . . .

  39. Hornet Seantonio

    December 17, 2010 at 9:23 pm

    Ariza+Marcus too good

  40. 42

    December 17, 2010 at 9:26 pm

    14,414 . . . as expected, not good enough . . .

    • 42

      December 17, 2010 at 9:27 pm

      Without the help that has been promised . . . I suppose some more of those `pledged dollars’ will come Wednesday.

  41. tyler

    December 17, 2010 at 10:26 pm

    Chris and Marcus is great and plus with a side of West. WoW

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