Hornets pull away late in win over Bobcats
With 6:37 left in the 4th quarter Tyrus Thomas hit his second free throw to bring the Bobcats within one point. The score read: Hornets 76-75 , and it stayed that way for nearly three minutes as neither team could get anything going. It was at that point that the Hornets went to their playmaker. No, not Chris Paul- I am talking about David West.
West set up Willie Green for an 18 foot jumper that put the Hornets up three and then he played the inside-out game with Chris Paul who drained a huge three-pointer off of a David West kick out. At that point, the game was all but over considering how both offenses had looked in the fourth quarter. If Paul’s three wasn’t the dagger, Tyrus Thomas might have inflicted the fatal wound to his own team.
Thomas grabbed a defensive rebound with 2:38 left and the Bobcats down by four, and wildly swung his elbow right into Emeka Okafor’s face. The result was a flagrant-2, two made free throws by Emeka, and Hornets ball, side out. The Bobcats could have gotten the lead down to 1 or 2, but instead West got to the line on that ensuing possession and the Hornets were up by 8. Game. Set. Match.
Undoubtedly he will be the topic of 90% of the conversation, so let’s just get it over with. The guy was a spark in the first half for the Hornets, scoring 7 points and setting up his teammates for some open looks. In the second half, however, Marcus only got 4 minutes as Monty preferred to go with Jack, Pondexter, and Green. Monty seemed to be concerned with Charlotte’s size on the wings, as Jackson and Wallace were taking smaller guys down to the post. If I had to guess why Monty went with that trio, it is because of their bulk and defensive prowess. Monty gave MT5 the green light early in the 4th and he responded with a nice assist to West and a missed jumper.
Monty doesn’t seem to have anything against Thornton, he just likes other guys better. The best analogy I can give: My fiancee makes me watch The Bachelor in return for her watching everything I want to watch. Every year it comes down to these final five or so and all the girls are relatively hot, they have careers, a brain, good hearts, etc. It’s not like there are any “losers” in the group at that point- but he can only choose one. When he lets one of them go, they always ask “What did I do wrong?” and to me, that is not really a fair question. He just likes another chick more because objectively you are all about equal, but he is a subjective creature who has his own preferences.
Marco and Thornton have the same PER and Willie’s is 1 point less- they are all relatively equal all things considered. Monty likes defense and lateral quickness on the defensive end. Maybe he is right, maybe he is wrong- but it is not a matter of hating on a guy for personal reasons or stubbornness. The guy just likes what he likes.
Two nights in a row the guy does his best pre-injury Larry Johnson impression. For old school Hornets fans, you know what I am talking about. LJ would drive down the lane and unleash some nasty dunks on the opposition. West had a huge one last night that Ryan has chronicled and he followed up that performance with an equally nasty dunk in the first quarter today.
And is it just me or does West play extra physical against Diaw? Do you think he is still mad about getting screwed out of the Most Improved Player award and holds Diaw responsible since he can’t dunk on the face of the voters. West finished with 26 and 8, and had those two key assists late. I love me some CP3, but West seriously deserves to be AT LEAST co-MVP with Paul on this team now that half of the season is over with.
Other Notes and Observations
- Perhaps the worst rebounding effort by the Hornets since the first Lakers game. The numbers don’t really reflect it, but if you watched the game, then you know what I am talking about. At least 4 times a Bobcats player got an offensive rebound due to the Hornets not communicating and knocking it out of their own teammates’ hands. Good rebounding teams find a man when the ball is in the air and put a body on him. Tonight the Hornets just starred at the rim and waited for the ball to come to them. Hopefully that was just due to fatigue and is not the start of a trend.
- The Hornets missed opportunities at the end of each of the first three quarters to get some points. In their magical ’07-’08 season, it seemed like the Hornets always closed the quarter with a made shot, but it is hard to recall that happening many times this year (outside of Marco 70 foot heaves). Jack missed a jumper at the buzzer to end the first, CP3 missed one before the half and Ariza took an extra dribble that resulted in a dunk that came .2 seconds after the 3rd quarter buzzer sounded. In close games like these and come playoff time- those are huge points. The Hornets have to get that end of quarter magic back.
- We can’t say that the Hornets don’t catch breaks from time to time- the Bobcats missed two point blank dunks in this game and also failed to convert some rather easy layups.
- Okafor looked exhausted tonight. No way Kwame has the game of his life if the Hornets didn’t land in Charlotte at 6 AM following back to back overtime games. Kwame constantly got position down low as Emeka attempted to front a guy with no post moves for some reason. Considering that he was probably 75% at best, this might have been one of Okafor’s top 5 games as a Hornet in my opinion.
- In order of preference: Give me Gerald Wallace, then Nazr Mohammad, then Stephen Jackson. Wallace would be a great fit, even if the Hornets kept Ariza. He does a great job coming off of screens and can take the ball to the hole if defenses go over picks or can hit the 20 footer if they go under. Nazr didn’t do much, but the fact that J Smitty was a no show once again and Aaron Gray can’t set a pick without getting an offensive foul makes any competent big man look like an All-Star. Jackson just wouldn’t fit on either end of the court with this particular team. Granted, he would be better than Green or Belinelli but he would also take the ball out of the hands of much more efficient players.
- The Bobcats started off the game red hot from distance- going 4 of 6. They came back to Earth, however, missing 8 of their last 9.
- Jarrett Jack looked remarkably slow tonight every time he tried to penetrate. It really looked like the Bobcats had super glued him themselves to his hip. Jack was 1 of 7 tonight and the one make was a difficult fadeaway as the shot clock expired in the 4th.
- Quincy Pondexter made some nice passes tonight and had several “hockey assists” by my count. He threaded the needle that led to an Okafor power layup and had a couple nice drive and kicks in his 13 minutes of play. The guy didn’t miss a shot, didn’t have a turnover, and only missed one defensive rotation by my count. He will never be a Drew Brees, but he can be a Brad Johnson (translation: he won’t win you games, but he won’t lose them either), and I will take that as my 8th man.
- Jason Smith contributes nothing to this team and has been completely figured out by league scouts. If he is the first and only big coming off this bench in the playoffs, it will hard for the Hornets to get out of the first round unless the Hornets plan on playing West and Okafor 44+ minutes a night.
- The Hornets had 21 assists on their 32 field goals, but CP3 only had 4 of those assists. Does anybody else remember the old days when Chris Paul would have 12 assists and the team as a whole only had 15 or 16? This Hornets team has more guys who can handle the ball and David West is a much better passer out of the post. This will make the Hornets far tougher to defend come playoff time.
- The Hornets zone is AWEFUL. Their guards are active, but West just gets lost in it on almost every possession. After his fourth or fifth mistake, CP3 let him have it and West was not very pleased as he shouted back at the Man of Steal. Monty called a timeout and the Hornets never went back to the zone again.
- Impressive stats: Emeka was 6 of 8 from the line, Ariza had 6 steals, and Okafor had three big blocks while also changing at least half a dozen shots. On a side note, if you took my advice and took the Hornets money line and parlayed it with the under that I suggested, you would have won $480 on a $100 bet.
- Hornets have 4 of their next 5 games at home and the four remaining road games they have this month (Atlanta, GS, Sac, and Phoenix) are all winnable. The Hornets can go on a nice little run before the All-Star break and if they do I have no doubt that they will be buyers at the trade deadline. This next month is huge for this year, and perhaps, beyond.
lol are u guys hornets fans or thornton fans? i wouldnt mind trading thornton if we could get an upgrade for him. we arent going to get anything for willie. im not saying thornton's a bad player or that i want him gone. im saying we need to make a move if we want to compete in the playoffs this year and thornton seems to be the only piece we can move to get a valuable piece back in return.
ur_gmas_daughter, didn't know if you were serious or not...heck, with these posts, you can't always tell. Tell you what... an occasional 'LOL' would help to keep the jokes in order! Agreed? My bad!!!!! LOL LOL
First 4 game win streak since we started the season 8-0. It's a favorable schedule taking us up to the All-Star break. I think these guys are starting to jell at the right time. I think the second half of this season is going to be VERY entertaining. Dear God, please let us meet the attendance benchmarks!
This site is getting way out of hand with all the Marcus love, its not even funny. It's just like last year. When CP3 was hurt and so many people were just dying to trade CP3 so that Darren Collison can be our PG of the future. It's the same now. I can't stand it.. Every Recap is a Marcus Thornton praising, Willie Green-Jarrett Jack-Marco Belinelli(whoever gets more minutes than Thornton) bashing time. I can't stand it. I really CANT. UGH. I hope Demps finds a way to trade Willie and Belinelli for some form of asset. Thornton plays 48 minutes, scores 30 points and we win. SO THAT EVERYBODY CAN JUST SHUT UP WITH THIS ON AND ON BICKERING. We get it okay?! - Marcus is talented but for some reason, Monty doesn't play him - Willie is average but for some reason, Monty plays him - Marco is average but for some reason, Monty plays him and every thing else is just a sub story to those 3 main stories. STOP THE BICKERING PLS. With all this Marcus Thornton drama going on. Nobody noticed that Okafor has been playing out of his mind lately(1.59 PPS, 13.4 PTS, 13 REB, 1.2 BLKS, 64% FG) or that Ariza is actually decent during the month of January(48% FG, 33% 3PFG, 6.1 REB 2 STL) or that Chris Paul is playing 3 more minutes in January but is posting lower numbers.) or that Pondexter is quietly developing into a solid role player. NO! ITS GOTTA BE ABOUT MARCUS. I'M SICK OF THIS
Let me clarify. I'm not saying Willie Green is a playmaker at all. A passing & playmaking are two different things. Green does take some really bad shots, but many are a result of a broken play with the 2nd unit with the shot clock winding down. Excluding tonight, I have seen all the games, and Marcus stops the ball a lot during a play. He catches it, sizes up his man, and then he makes a move. He's not a bad playmaker at all, but he stops the ball at the perimeter. Look back at the Orlando game. I remember Marcus posting up at the elbow area for 6 seconds or so before taking (and making) a contested fadeaway. It was such a bad shot. Even if it goes down, other players get discouraged from it. Why would they run down the court if he's going to do that? This is exactly why Marco starts. He plays beautifully within the flow with the starters. Thornton definitely has more skills than Willie, but Willie does what he's supposed to with the starters. End of story. Marcus will soon be a contributor and nothing more. He won't "save" this team. Just look at Darren Collison in Indiana. We all thought he'd be an All Star, but you can find him sitting on the bunch during crunch time of some games. It takes time, and neither player will ever be a huge difference maker for either team. I'm ending my Marcus Thornton discussion here. It's Justin Bieber annoying right now. Also, can some people do everyone a favor and have their face removed from Mr. Thornton's nuts?? Thank you. That is all.
Ur_gmass_daughter, wow...I suppose that's the answer! 'I'm just gonna hope he doesn't get playing time so we can move forward and talk about the game at hand'; shit, didn't know you felt THAT strongly! You'd actually wish the guy doesn't play...way to go dude! I guess we should all stop speaking of what WE see, and talk about what YOU prefer!!! Yeah...OK!
Man this constant bickering over MT5 is played out already! I LOVE Thornton but if I gotta get on here and see everybody go back and forth I'm just gonna hope he doesn't get playing time so we can move forward and talk about the game at hand. How many players are on the Hornets roster? According to "Doghouse" it's Marcus Thornton and the dude who's filling his minutes
I personally think Thornton247.com might work better. Marcus seems a bit too general and could possibly get people confused with the great Marcus Banks also on the roster.
Here's a toast to Marcus' 3 assists putting his average above the great passing 2 guard, Willie Green, with 6-7 minutes less playing time. Pretty impressive stuff. I think this kid has some potential.
I really don't ever trust the opinion of people who think something pretty complex is, rather, pretty simple.
You don't trust the opinion of the best scorer in Hornets' franchise history? How many minutes have you played in the NBA to qualify such statements? It's positive vibe towards MT5 is what qualified you to make that statement.
Hornets Sixth Man of the Game: Bobcats TV analyst Dell Curry, who also happens to be the all-time leading scorer in Hornets history, described Marcus Thornton this way Saturday: â€œHe has no fear, no conscience and can shoot the basketball. Thatâ€™s a dangerous combination.â€ The Louisiana State product paced a quiet outing from the Hornetsâ€™ bench, tallying seven points, all in the second quarter. I've been using the 'fearless' word for Buckets since last season. Curry is right.
that's been long forgotten. Every single game we talk about Marcus Thornton. "Marcus should play" "Marcus is an All Star" "Marcus is a better defender than Willie" "Marcus is this, Marcus is that" UGH i don't post comments too much because i like reading comments from others. But God, has this site turned into a Marcus Thornton site. @Ziko: I just have to say. I like your ideas. But there's one idea that i didn't like. "We're winning so why complain?" or something like that. That's exactly the type of attitude the FO and coaching staff should not look into. If there's a way to improve our team, then by all means do it. Just saying :)
That's all that matters. And we play Toronto, Memphis, and Atlanta in the next 3 games before we see San Antonio. Lets go for 7 straight before we see the Spurs and ride the wave of momentum into 8 straight.
Gerald Wallace would be a great addition to the team. He has Smith's hustle (on a losing team), West's shooting ability, and can drive hard to the hoop with the athletic ability to finish. Not only does He also has the lateral quickness for monty's defense, but he won't have the attitude problem that thorton has.
all i can say is that veybody gets out this weekend and plays some ball. Get over watching the pros and their coaching. Set yourselves free. Get some friends and play until dusk. Talk trash with each other, work up a sweat and call it as fair as possible....always remebering its for the love of the game. Enough of this insane concentration on these guys,\. Be them yourselves. Sweat it out. Afterwards, you will feel drained of all the stress and anxieties of this modern world. But YOU will have done it. Looking forward to my 2.5 months in Florida. Tennis everyday. Bikes all day oo you all soon...but take the dr'd s points and play some ball.n paths that free the soul. Talk t
If we plays bad teams like Houston (no bigs, but not that bad backcourt and Willie was awfull) or Charlotte Monty can start or sit whoever he wants as SG and we are probably going to come out with a win regardless. But when the team is against good teams we are going to need Marcus. Marcus is a better player than Willie period (yes, as a defender too). So you as a coach must go ahead you personal prefercens. You are not going to have much more from Willie than tonight and he was mediocre against a mediocre team. How can a coach be this selfish? If he gives more minutes to a player than another one simply because he likes more the firstone evenif the other one playes better, has A LOT more upside and is a better player overall, that is NOT having preferences, that's bad coaching. I like Monty and i think he is and will be a good coach, but i can't stand this thing. It reminds me past year when Marcus and Darren didn't get minutes even if our other non-CP3-Guards sucked that much (Oh what a big surprise when they didn't get ANY minutes out of New Orleans!!!!!!!!!). I wonder if there are other teams that would give Willie that many minutes while having on the roster a good, young, smart player with upside like Marcus. I wonder why the Hornets must have ungifted guards on the court just because our PG is one of the best in the league (and probably the smartest player in the league) and can hide their lack of talents. I can't stand this situation, Hornets got two wins so people are going to say "we won those games with Willie", but i'm going to tell you that if this team want to go to the conference semifinals it will need Marcus on the floor, it will need him playing well with his teammates of the starting 5 in those last minutes of the game. When the Hornets are going to play against a team like Utah, the Blazers, Dallas or OKC we won't be able to afford to hope our other guards are not going to be awfull. When i see Marcus on the floor i hope he's going to do well and play great. When i see Willie on the floor i hope he's not going to be awfull and play bad. That means something! With all this i wrote i'm done for today talking about our SG spot. I'm just gonna add that sometime if you take the ball out of some efficient players their are going to be even more efficient, so if the player who does that isn't awfull it's a good thing imo so people like Stephen Jackson, evenif i don't like to bring old players on this team.
@Ziko: Go ask people in Philly about Willie as a starting SG. Guys like Big Baby Davis and Nate Robinson won a game in the NBA finals for the celtics against the best team in the world in a serie that went to the 7th game. Guys like Fisher doesn't simply fit to a system but hit big time shots to win several games in the finals in his career. Guys like Dragic won a game nearly singlehandedly against the spurs. Just the past season. They had offensive skills, talent, passion and intensity. Like Marcus. Playoff in the west we are going to find a team so close to our talent level and everything can make the difference. So if Marcus is going to play or not it's going to be a big difference if our shooting guard on the court it's going to be Willie. And it's false Marcus can't play in Monty's system. Tonight he didn't took a bad shot and made the right extra passes. Besides Willie doesn't fit more the system than Marcus. What does he do to fit better? He takes bad midrange shots that sometimes he hits and is an average defender. That's all. I don't even know why you are talking about our record last season whitout or with CP3. We lost some games without CP3 and with Peja who couldn't guard any SF of this league on the defensive end so we have to play with Willie Green instead of Marcus, while Willie that season bricked all year and Marcus played well and showed upside? That doesn't make sense.
Wow. I go out to see the movie TRON and I miss this? What an EPIC thread. It's like reading Mike Wilbon go toe-to-toe with three Kornheisers on ritilan. Ooh wee!!!
Ok there was some misunderstaing about your position from my side, when i began writing i didnt see your other posts :) i know that. That's obvious. No one wins alone, that's obvious. I've said he nearly single handedly won the game because he erupted in a monstergame for his role that changed the balance of the match. Two teams are even and knows eachother and suddenly someone you don't expect makes them do that last step to win the game, that's the kind of player Marcus can be in our team expecially if he has some chemistry going with his teammates and can be that last step ahead in a game against a good team. I don't think Marcus it's a superstar (nor i think he will be an allstar) but i don't see JC or Terry having difficulties in getting minutes. That's all.. I write so much because english it's not my main language so i can't explain in few words sometimes :P I'm happy we won. I am just frustrated for my favorite player on the roster. GEAUX HORNETS ! P.S.: Imho Ariza is much smarter than Wallace, evenif Gerald it's a better overall player and the two don't fit well togheter. I don't like him but if we get him giving up very few, ehy that's ok :D but i don't see that happening easily :p
@Ziko, I do think this Marcus thing is getting a little out of hand, but I'll say that us Marcus lovers can't be convinced of the notion that this team is better off without Marcus, especially long term. It's just driving certain people nuts. I can't speak for everyone but at this point it's all been blown out of proportion because people like me get infuriated when Marcus has literally won games for us as the focal point, and then the very next game he plays 8-10 mins in favor of Green. I've never put Thornton close to Wade's/Kobe's pedestal, but the fact that you think of him as the type of guy like Terry, Crawford, Ginobli, is significant in itself. Wouldn't it only be benecifical to have a guy like that on our team?? We do, actually. But he doesn't get the minutes. In time, if he gets the minutes he should, he'll become that explosive guy with a more complete game than Terry or JR. That's why this whole Thornton worshipping thing has is out of hand. That's what pissed people off and I'm sure you know that.
Dude, those guys did NOT single handedly win games. I can't stand hearing that from anyone. Only once in my life have I witnessed someone single handedly win a game. And that was when Kobe Bryant scored 81 points. Here's the boxscore: http://sports.espn.go.com/nba/boxscore?gameId=260122013 Smush FREAKING Parker was the second leading scorer with 13 points. Dude, TEAMS win games. Not players. I honestly would RATHER have Monty play Marcus. But he doesn't. And I understand that he's the coach and we're not. And since we're winning more than we're losing, how can we argue? I never denied Marcus in having talent. I'm not defending Willie Green dude. Believe me I'm not. I said the Philly starting comment out of sarcasm. I just don't understand how you guys can complain so much when we're WINNING. I think you guys think of Marcus way too highly. I think he's a good player. But I think he's comparable to Jason Terry, Jamal Crawford, JR Smith. The way you guys speak of him, its like you guys are placing him up there with Kobe, Wade, Roy, Manu, Joe Johnson, Ray Allen, Ellis, and Iggy. And I just don't see him near those guys.
See here's the thing Ziko, Marcus has shown he CAN fit given the time. He's had incredible games this year. He lead the biggest comeback in Hornets history. You can't honestly tell me that you think Willie Green is a better fit as the 6th man instead of Marcus. Tell me ONE thing that Willie does better than Marcus. ONE thing.
Stefan if you've been watching the last few games, you'd notice that Marcus IS getting better at playing in the flow of the offense. He looked great against Charlotte. He passed the ball around like anyone else, assisted on more plays than Green and Jack, attacked the rim for some easy points by RUNNING. He was doing all the right things tonight. the Magic game he was shooting more and passing less but are you really going to complain about the results of that game? Clutch in OT, more than any other of his teammates. No way this team suffers when he's been playing the way he is now.
@ Stefan - You're saying Willie Green passes? The dude is the biggest chucker/ballhog I've ever seen on the Hornets that I can remember. @Ziko lol, I read your stuff. I responded after you said "You know Willie started quite a few games in Philadelphia, right?" and I thought you were saying that Willie was actually a good player. I just wanted an explanation for this, because the dude sucks lol.
@Ziko You really need to stop saying we need a starting SG when we have a potential all star in Thornton. Wat we really need is a deep bench and another big man. So stop talking about gettin Iggy, Jackson, Martin etc. ***Ariza doesnt hold a candle to Gwallace. He can score at will and is a very versatile defender. Wallace never gives up on a play while Ariza seems uninterested at times. BTW if we were to get wallace, he wudnt start at the 2, Ariza wud have to sit his ass on the bench. HE IS NOT A 2 GUARD
Ok seriously guys I've been coming to this site for over a year now and all this time I loved reading how the cohesion of HORNETS FANS talked about the team as a whole until this season with all the Thornton drama. I'm a big Thornton fan trust me, but the name of this team is not Marcus Thornton and The Hornets. I believe he is a vital part to our success, but he definitely isn't the answer in this team rising up to contention for the title. I see many of you bash Ziko because of his perceptions, but at least respect them. He mainly talks about how Thornton does not fit in MONTY's system and THIS IS TRUE. Hence why Monty doesn't trust him with minutes YET. Ziko does not mention anything about how Thornton does not fit or is a hindrance to the team. It seems like many of you put Thornton ahead of the team and use Monty as a scapegoat when we lose (and even when we win). 1) Thornton is only in his second year so he still has so much to learn. You can't expect that if the current unit on the floor was having difficulty that Thornton would just come in and everything will be peachy 2) Monty is a rookie coach, so you could probably expect him learning a lot about leading a team on the fly. All I'm saying is that we should be able to get along as Hornets fans. We should find some common ground like talking about how Okafor as been a vital force lately, or how Ariza has looked way more productive on the offensive end. Even the growth of Pondexter and his potential in becoming a big piece of the puzzle for the future. So lets all find PEACE :) P.S. I like reading your comments, rather than posting my own lol
"Shut up and stand up like a man". To what exactly? I've said the same thing over and over again. You're just trying to make me out to be a bad guy of some kind. I'm not going back and forth. You're just not reading my posts. You're just attacking the world because your favorite player isn't playing as much as you want. We just won and you're complaining. I do think Marcus is better than Green. But I also think Monty is a good coach and has really improved this team. You don't seem to think so because he doesn't play Marcus as much as you want. I've kept up with your posts, and I actually read what you write. If you did the same, you'd understand my point of view. This is the difference between me and you and between Marcus and Monty. I believe in TEAM. There is no sides. I never picked one. I pick what's best for the team. You believe in YOU. What you want. You want Marcus to play more. Nothing more than that. You don't care if we finish with a 37-45 record as long as he gets his burn, and starts. And you don't care if CP or DWest leaves. You don't care if we make the playoffs. You just care about Marcus. My guess? You've been in the same situation and you're frustrated by it. The funny thing is... My day to day logic in regards to this team is pretty close to what is actually happening. 25-16 bro.
stefan: FALSE, he stopped the ball very often. Our 2nd unit bigs never got a pass from Willie all season long lol. Marcus tonight 3 assist in 10 minutes but he stops do ball WTF
Ziko, shut up or stand up like a man. Do one of the two. This whole playing both sides of the fence thing is cowardly and annoying to read. That's why I skim over your b.s. It's not even consistent and you flip-flop every other post. You bitch about how Marcus is not the answer than say that you never said Willie Green is better, claiming that Marcus is better trade bait as the reason. It doesn't even make sense dude. If you think Marcus is a better player than Willie Green, you are in my corner you dumba&&. Instead you reply to every single post disagreeing with me and all of my posts are pro-Marcus. Try keeping up with this post because it's about as sensible as your logic is day-in, day-out.
LoL Stefan. Hornet buddy. Read all my posts. I never said Willie Green is better. I don't think anyone reads what I write anymore. I think I write so much, you guys skim over it, find something you don't like, reply right away. I've said it before, I'll say again... God damn... Wow... Hope you guys catch this, this time... I'D RATHER TRADE WILLIE GREEN THAN MARCUS THORNTON BUT I KNOW WE WON'T GET AS MUCH FOR GREEN AS WE WOULD FOR MARCUS. LoL.
You know Willie started quite a few games in Philadelphia, right? If Marcus and Darren played so well last season, why did we lose so much with them? We were 23-22 with an injured Chris Paul playing last season. We were 14-23 without Chris Paul last season. Last years team vs this years team: COACHES: Bower vs Monty STARTERS: Okafor vs Okafor West vs West Peja vs Ariza Thornton vs Belinelli Collison vs Paul RESERVES: Gray vs Gray Songaila vs Smith Posey vs Pondextor Peterson vs Green Jack vs ? Marks vs Mbenga Wright vs Thornton When you look at last years team without Paul, it REALLY ISN'T that much worse than this seasons squad. We've made small changes. So why, if Marcus was SOOO amazing, were we not able to do any better last season? I'm actually asking that seriously to you guys. Collison and Thornton had good seasons last year because the coach said do what ever you want. Bower didn't implement ANYTHING. He just said, play ball. Monty put in a system, and chose a specific style in which Marcus doesn't quite fit in. Thinking Marcus will take us to the conference semi finals might be the stupidest thing I have heard here yet. Doghouse AT THE VERY LEAST says that he wants him in for the entertainment, and I buy that because like in girls like the long ball in baseball, they like scorers in basketball. But to say Marcus is the difference? LoL. Wow.
Yea, actually I DID follow the games last season. And I couldn't stand ANY of it. Doghouse, watching a team put up empty points and lose isn't fun to me. Its frustrating. And it wasn't even good basketball. Last season was a wasted season. This season is a step in the right direction and I think you're taking away from it ENTIRELY.
You obviously didn't follow the Hornets at all last season. Last season was fun as S***. We knew that we were massively outmatched and had 2 tiny terrors keeping us in the playoff hunt until March came around. We were 31-29 at that point. Chris Paul wasn't even close to 50% and most people questioned why the hell he was even playing. But you wouldn't know. Because you are a bandwagon MFer. Talent wise the two teams aren't even freaking funny in comparison. Literally every single non-returning player is an upgrade over the people that are now gone. Even you think Jack is a clear upgrade over DC. So stop acting like last season was not somehow some resounding success. Marcus has been the difference at SG against some very good teams already. You may not like it. But I feel like I will regrettably be sitting here telling Monty to go shove his ego up his a&& in late-April. Dude, the only reason I sit here and type this crap out is cause I have some damn hope that it can make a tiny difference and Monty Williams might find out how people feel about his super-sized ego. And in case you need some statistical proof about how god-awful terrible our talent level was last year. We started 3-6 with CP3 averaging an ungodly 27-28 points a game while shooting 67% from the field and over 55% from the 3 pt line to go along with 8 APG over that span. He pretty much was so mother fricking good that he spotted the rest of the Hornets a nice 10-15 point cushion to play with. Than he got hurt.
Wins are wins at the end of the day. I'll say it right now and Ziko will no doubt refute it. If Marcus is playing 25-30 minutes come playoff time and our starters are healthy, we will win our first series unless it's against LAL. If he is a regular DNP, we are one and done. Granted, at this rate. We are more likely to find out the answer to the second than the first. But that's my opinion. Some people are content with our starting lineup no-showing for 7-10 minutes at a time, scoring at a clip of less than a point a minute, almost nightly. Funny how CP3 even mentioned that, when MT5 is in the game, the Hornets play with more energy and confidence. One other point to make regarding Marcus. Marcus gets the 6th man in the arena going like no other player on the Hornets roster. The team plays differently with the crowd legitimately behind them.
@Stefan - 2 assists per game combined in over 48 minutes for Beli and Green. That's some pretty sick ball movement. @Ziko - Marcus does fit when he plays with CP3. More so than our other 2 guards consistently. Not a single person on our bench fits in Monty's system because our bench unit doesn't have a system.
Hornet, we are not playing the Spurs in the first round unless one of the two teams starters get hurt. At which point. Yes, if them. Obviously not if us.
I'm sorry, but Thornton will not be the reason whether we beat any team not named LAL in the first round or not. He's too inconsistent to make that big of a difference in a 7 game series. Until he learns to earn his points in the flow of the game without being a ball stopper, Month wil refuse to give him a major role. I agree with this philosophy 100%. Willie Green & Marco may not be A's "skilled" A's Thornton, but they don't destroy the offensive flow either.
Doghouse. Are you serious dude? I'm actually getting frustrated with you. I've NEVER said I don't think Marcus should play. I would rather see him in there than Green. CP has also said "Marcus brings us so much energy OFF THE BENCH". As do I. I like Marcus playing dude. I've said I'd rather trade Green, but I know we can get more for Marcus. I actually LOVE Marco and Marcus as a 1-2 punch. If we didn't have Willie, Marcus would play 25 minutes a game, Marco would play 27. It be perfect. All I've ever said about Marcus is: 1. He doesn't fit well in Monty's system. 2. He needs to work on his defense. 3. He needs to work on his shot selection. 4. They ONLY WAY we could get a player like Iggy, Martin, Jackson, or Wallace would be if we traded Thornton to get them. 5. He is our best trading chip aside from CP and West. But either way Doghouse, you are thinking too highly of him. I admit he's a good player, but you are speaking of him as if he were a top 10 guard in this league, and HE'S NOT. The only way we win a playoff series is if we make a few moves and acquire players to give us a deeper squad.