Game On: Hornets @ Raptors (Live Chat)

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Published: March 1, 2011

Matchup: Hornets(35-26) @ Raptors(16-44)

Off Efficiency: Hornets 103.5(18th), Raptors 102.9(21st)
Def Efficiency: Hornets 100.5(6th), Raptors 109.6(29th)

The Raptors, due to last season and the nature of their players, have the reputation of being an explosive offensive team. They aren’t, though I would still call them an offense-focused team. In fact, there isn’t a player on their team other than maybe Amir Johnson or Reggie Evans who give much of a thought to defense.

That doesn’t mean, however, that their offense is any good, because it isn’t. They are 21st in the league in offensive efficiency, and of the six guys who take the most shots for the team, none of them manage better than 1.22 points per shot. They average 1.14 points per shot. That means that their top six shooters produce at about the same rate Willie Green has all year.

Yeesh.

Outside of their scoring issues, the Raptors also show their offense-centric tendencies when it comes to rebounding. Although they are a poor rebounding team, they are actually in the top 10 when it comes to offensive rebounding. Correspondingly, they are in the bottom ten in defensive rebounding.

Finally, they are one of the league leaders in fouling and giving up free throws. That makes me wonder – which team will blink first? The Raptors want to give you free throws, but the Hornets don’t want to take them. It’s like a battle between Imperial Stormtroopers, who can’t hit the broad side of a barn, and redshirt security officers from Star Trek, who can’t help but be shot whenever they appear on screen.  Who wins?

Injuries:

Hornets: None
Raptors: Reggie Evans and Linas Kleiza are out. Bargnani is “AWOL” according to his coach, but should play.

Anyone else glad we never hear that kind of garbage about our team?

Positional Analysis

PG: Chris Paul v Jose Calderon
Advantage: Hornets
Sure, Paul has been struggling, but Jose Calderon’s shooting has been poor and he never gets to the free throw line. He’s still a solid, low turnover passer that leads a squad that doesn’t turn the ball over often. I’ve also noticed that Paul seems to get under Calderon’s skin. It’ll be interesting to see if that happens again and if Calderon will try to get after Paul. That always becomes entertaining.

SG: Willie Green v DeMar DeRozan
Advantage: Raptors
DeRozan has developed into the Raptors most efficient scoring threat. Still, that’s damning him with faint praise. He scores 1.227 points per shot, which is barely above average in the league. His turnover numbers are nice, but everywhere else, he’s awful. No rebounds. No assists. No steals. No blocks. For an athletic freak, that’s disappointing. Sadly, everything I just said could describe Willie, except he’s not quite so prolific a scorer.

SF: Trevor Ariza v James Johnson
Advantage: Hornets
James Johnson is a new Acquisition for the Raptors, who are hoping he will provide what Julian Wright was supposed to provide. Sadly, I think they can expect the same sort of mediocre rebounding, bumbling offense and lost defensive rotations. Ariza isn’t much offensively, but he’s still a fantastic defender.

PF: David West v Amir Johnson
Advantage: Hornets
I’m an Amir Johnson fan. He works hard on the boards, finishes well around the rim, blocks a good amount of shots, and is the only Raptor who tries defensively. Sadly, he’s never figured out how to defend without fouling, and his foul rate is so high he has trouble staying on the floor. He’ll make David West work, but I expect West to go at him and get his butt nailed to the bench.

C: Emeka Okafor v Andrea Bargnani
Advantage: Hornets
Bargnani is a paper tiger. He takes too many long jumpers, only gets a mediocre number of foul shots, and is only a mediocre shooter. He doesn’t rebound, assist, block shots, or defend – and he turns the ball over at a stupid rate for a jump-shooter. I’d take Okafor and his rebounding, defensive prowess, and efficient complimentary scoring any minute of the day.

Bench

Ed Davis, Leandro Barbosa, Jerryd Bayless, Sonny Weems, Alexis Ajinca vs
Carl Landry, Marco Belinelli, Jarrett Jack, Jason Smith, Quincy Pondexter
Advantage: Even
Ed Davis and Bayless are solid for the Raptors, but Barbosa hasn’t been good in years and Ajinca is terrible. At some point later this month, when the Hornets have a few practices to work on stuff with Landry, I expect the Hornets to field a better, more cohesive bench unit, but for now, I can’t give them the edge.

Anyone else worried because this game preview seems so optimistic?  Me too.

Enjoy the game!

81 Comments

  1. Jordan

    March 1, 2011 at 11:26 am

    Did anyone else look at Sacs box score last night. Thorton notched up a game high 29 points, 4 rebs, 3 steals, and 2 assists in like 27 mins. of play. I still supporty our trade 100%. Im just glad to say that Thorton is doing pretty well so far. (9-16 FG/ 1-4 3FG/ 10-12 FT’s)

  2. MaxJD_Nola2NYC

    March 1, 2011 at 11:34 am

    <—— worried

  3. 42

    March 1, 2011 at 11:35 am

    Even benches. Write the day down…

  4. f.g. di bene

    March 1, 2011 at 11:39 am

    I think you are mistaken on bargani, he had a difficult janaury, but now he’s playing very good offensive games. In febraury he avaraged something like 28ppg with 50% from the field. he will be a tough matchup for emeka, he’s long e stretches the floor, that means that okafor will be far from the basket on defense and bargnani can still hit shots over him, or drive to the basket very well for a 7 footer.

  5. Michael McNamara

    March 1, 2011 at 11:49 am

    Willie as a whole this season doesn’t have the numbers DD has (oh Ryan, you and your numbers) but what about as a starter? He is in his proper role now and to me SG is at least even.

    C;mon Ryan, don’t jinx us- we NEED this win. i wanna see you write a winning game review for once!

    • MaxALM

      March 1, 2011 at 7:16 pm

      it really seems like every time someone writes “horrible” in reference to the other team in a game preview, that team kills us.

  6. NolaHog

    March 1, 2011 at 11:49 am

    I really think the Hornets are about to hit their stride. As sickening as the Houston game was, it really seemed “flukey.” If Landry looks anything like he did against Houston and if Belinelli stays productive, I think we’re a very diffcult team to beat. Also, the Houston game was the first game in a long time that I’ve arrived in time to watch the pre-game presentation. Holy cow, this intro is priceless!

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8FK0j20RfAg

    Also, I’m going to go watch the game at 12 Mile Limit over at 500 Telemachus St. (near Finn McCools). I’ve found they have a decent number of “Hornet Nerds” who usually watch the games there. Might be a good time to test out the new Hornets Drinking Game (see the journal entry).

    • L_Reazy

      March 1, 2011 at 1:22 pm

      I missed that! WOOOOOOW! Did we just WIN the Finals or something … lol!

      That was tight … but wait … did you pay attention to the Aaron Gray and DJ Mbenga screw-face mean-mug. Straight up gangsta!!!

      L_REAZY

    • JNR

      March 1, 2011 at 5:52 pm

      I live right by there dude, maybe I’ll see you there.

  7. Archie

    March 1, 2011 at 12:34 pm

    Disagree with Bargnani description at least for the offensive part. He’s a great offensive player, you don’t score over 20 points a night if you’re average. That said he’s a very bad team defender so you need to beat your man on 1vs1 and attack the rim and no one will help.

    • f.g. di bene

      March 1, 2011 at 1:20 pm

      this.

  8. paul

    March 1, 2011 at 1:36 pm

    What the hell is this?
    I don’t mean to be irritating here, but since when does Gray no longer count as part of the NOH bench?
    Really, this sucks and if I were him, this sort of analysis and cold shoulder is enough to make you cold hearted.
    You play whenever given a chance and play well.
    Enough that the team depended upon you.
    Then this crap?
    I mean really, this is awful.

    • 42

      March 1, 2011 at 3:44 pm

      Maybe just an oversight? Of course, that’s part of the beef, eh?

      Mbenga didn’t Mmake it either…

      • paul

        March 1, 2011 at 4:53 pm

        Well, perhaps.
        But these “oversights” happen with every pregame analysis.
        I guess I should consider it sort of a good thing if he is mentioned when he is a starter.
        Big shout out for that.
        Otherwise it’s a mistake.

        No, I think it is more. But not just here.
        That idiot Jim Eichenhofer refuses him even a spot on the team.
        What a fool.
        Does he really get paid for these burps?

      • paul

        March 1, 2011 at 4:56 pm

        MBenga doesn’t even play.
        I am not a big fan, but understand the need for bench fouls in certain games.
        But Gray, in my humble opinion, has earned not only his play time, but some kind of respect from the coach, his teammates AND the fickled fan.
        I wish at times he would be traded to a place that does want his services.

        You do realize you are talking to his mother, right?

      • 42

        March 1, 2011 at 5:18 pm

        I think I like Gray more than most.

        I wish every player were in a scenario where they can succeed and we can see the best product on the floor game after game across the Association.

  9. lancebrou68

    March 1, 2011 at 2:18 pm

    umm according to marc stein we’ve been inquiring about corey brewer according to twitter

  10. beesgeez

    March 1, 2011 at 2:57 pm

    I’ve liked Brewer since his Fla days. I can see it now:
    Starters:
    Paul
    Willie
    Ariza
    D West
    Okafor

    2nd unit:
    Jack
    Belinelli
    Brewer
    Landry
    Gray

    I could used to that. Only downside it Q-pon development gets put on hold.

    • DownUnder

      March 1, 2011 at 5:07 pm

      The second unit would be a beasty, 4 guys that were at some point in the last 2 years starters.

  11. Plane_Jane318

    March 1, 2011 at 3:25 pm

    Brewer would fit in with this team very well. He plays great D and is decent on offense and gives us someone that can play SG and SF.

  12. Kevin

    March 1, 2011 at 3:25 pm

    I’m not sure which moderator it was that I discussed Amir with in the trade deadline chat, but let us forget my comment for tonight (I do, however, take full responsibility for it, and you can continue to hold me to it).

    Sidebar: I ordered my tickets for Sunday’s game here in Cleveland yesterday. $147 face value each for a third of the price. High five, LeBron.

  13. Davey

    March 1, 2011 at 3:56 pm

    Michael, Green as a starter has been a better scorer (though a slightly worse rebounder and the same as a distributor). However, he’s shot about the same from beyond the arc–33.3% as a starter, 32.4% off the bench–and does not get to the free throw line more frequently as a starter. No, the reason he has been more productive as a starter is because he is shooting 50% from the field, including a whopping 58% from 2-point range. If one takes a moment to peruse his career numbers, we will quickly see that this is unsustainable.

    But wait! Maybe it’s not a fluke but the fact that Green is now in his “proper role.” Unfortunately, we have a large sample size for Green as a starter, 221 games total. As a starter, Green is Green, the player we know well: he has averaged 27 minutes in those 221 games, shot 44% from the field and 31.5% from 3, offered 2 assists and 2 rebounds, and scored 1.04 points per shot.

    My suspicion is that Green has not found newfound skills as a starter but is simply on a hot streak, hitting his patented contested mid-range jumpers at unsustainable rate, and that Green is the same player he’s always been. For those interested, Michael and I disagree on this question at more length in the Thornton journal comment section.

    Of course I hope I’m wrong and Green has suddenly improved at age 29 now that he’s once again starting!

  14. James Online

    March 1, 2011 at 4:28 pm

    With Green, Jack, and Ariza dominating play at 2-3 we have no legitimate 3pt shooter to spread the floor. Other than Paul, whose three’s dont spread the floor, Marco is the only real threat and he’s not playing much. Bad idea.

  15. JaeAmazin

    March 1, 2011 at 4:38 pm

    Tonight is the Start of another Win Streak..Hornets All Day Bitches!!

    • Go Blue

      March 1, 2011 at 4:49 pm

      Nothing better than a positive attitude…I’m with you, GO HORNETS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  16. Sincerely Yours96

    March 1, 2011 at 5:02 pm

    Azubuike was bought out by NY. I liked him in Gstate but idk if he is healthy yet. Wud be a good addition

  17. JCS

    March 1, 2011 at 5:04 pm

    This pre-game analysis is great n’ stuff, but what about JuJu?

  18. Dontae

    March 1, 2011 at 5:05 pm

    We should win this game but I said the same thing about the Rockets. Let’s hope Chris Paul starts playing like our MVP. I’m expecting at least 10 and 10 from him. We win this game by 10.

    • CP3nBrees

      March 1, 2011 at 5:50 pm

      Our expectations for CP has just gotten lower and lower….

      • Dontae

        March 1, 2011 at 7:22 pm

        He’s trying to get used to not playing with the brace. I hope. He needs to pull it together.

  19. Joe P

    March 1, 2011 at 6:05 pm

    Regarding the Gray discussion above, I agree that at this point he’s underrated. He’s beat out NBA champ Mbenga for the back up banger spot. He makes most of his dunks and chippies, doesn’t shoot shots out of his range, and plays hard all the time. He’s not afraid to mix it up with the biggest toughest guys. At this point Gray and Smith are both the 4th big man depending on the situation. With Landry here, I consider Smith behind Gray, because I want a real center behind Oak, and the four spot seems pretty wraped up (that’s why Powe is a bad fit too- any starting 2s out there?).

    • 42

      March 1, 2011 at 6:08 pm

      Me and you, Joe P.

      I will offer up to you: Would getting Powe be an upgrade over the expiring Smith?

      I don’t know. I suffer from a lack of Powe knowledge.

      • Joe P

        March 1, 2011 at 7:38 pm

        I don’t know a ton about him because he’s a role player; he’s not big enough to be a center, and is limited on offense. Been injured too. Better decisions and D than Smith, but shorter, and not as much range.

      • paul

        March 1, 2011 at 7:41 pm

        My god!
        Somebody must have opened a window because I got a wiff of fresh thought.
        Thanks….JoeP

  20. JaeAmazin

    March 1, 2011 at 6:50 pm

    Where’s My JJack Haters!!

  21. Hornet Seantonio

    March 1, 2011 at 7:07 pm

    down 15 to the snot nosed raptors. “I want somebody butt, i want it now, IVE HAD IT! Damn it thats twice, I want some butts!!!!”

  22. Stew

    March 1, 2011 at 7:09 pm

    Team looks slow tonight. Like they don’t care. Not a good sign.

  23. chung

    March 1, 2011 at 7:12 pm

    Dang…I wonder if the Jazz would have traded D-Will for Cp3 straight up? D-Will might have liked the idea of moving up a few spots rather than going to the Nets.

    • Dontae

      March 1, 2011 at 7:24 pm

      How dare you try and trade CP3…

      • chung

        March 1, 2011 at 7:51 pm

        at least that’s better value than Jameer Nelson and vince carter.

  24. justafan

    March 1, 2011 at 7:13 pm

    Yet another great defensive stand Monty. What we need to do is outscore the other team you idiot. Thats how you win. I know it sounds simple but apparently you have yet to grasp that concept, especially against teams with losing records.

    • Bee-fense

      March 1, 2011 at 7:54 pm

      If that were true, the Suns and Warriors would have won the last 7 NBA titles

      • Westbank Ripp

        March 1, 2011 at 8:00 pm

        Bee-fense…WHAT?

    • Westbank Ripp

      March 1, 2011 at 7:58 pm

      Sorry ‘Just A Fan’, I meant to give you the thumbs up…not thumbs down (my curser was off)! I agree with you though, it looks like they’re missen something…a spark of some sort…someone who can come off the bench with amazing heart and energy to help carry the team! Oh wait, there’s no one, not anymore!

    • 42

      March 1, 2011 at 10:03 pm

      Outscoring is about a difference: points scored – points allowed. If that difference is positive, you win; negative, you lose. 0 is not allowed.

      Anyone focusing on anything but the whole of that formula is missing something.

  25. Dontae

    March 1, 2011 at 7:23 pm

    Chris Paul 1-5 at half. Jarret Jack 9 points on 4-5 shooting (1-1 from three). Dare I say start Jack over Paul to start the second half?!

  26. PeeDee

    March 1, 2011 at 7:42 pm

    all i could say is SMFH at our offense…..what happen willie? was u just playing that way so u wouldnt get traded? and whats wrong with cp3?

  27. Stew

    March 1, 2011 at 7:52 pm

    Beli!

  28. Monty'sDoghouse

    March 1, 2011 at 8:00 pm

    I find it interesting that people will defend CP3 and Monty Williams with delusional fervor. Chris seems mentally checked out right now. Blame the knee, blame the supporting cast, blame the coach. Or just blame Chris for not being mentally tough.

    All I have to say is thank god for Carl Landry or these last 2 games wouldn’t have been close.

    • Davey

      March 1, 2011 at 8:19 pm

      If you think Chris Paul is healthy, you haven’t seen a healthy Chris Paul.

      • Stew

        March 1, 2011 at 8:23 pm

        He’s healthy. He’s just mentally out of it.

        If he thinks this is helping him in any way in the eyes of other organizations, he is in for a rude awakening. His stock is falling fast every minute of play.

        Jack is dangerously close to getting the start.

      • 42

        March 1, 2011 at 10:07 pm

        I see no reason to suspect that Jack will be a regular starter at the 1 on this team this season.

      • Dontae

        March 1, 2011 at 8:32 pm

        Are you serious? You said Jack is close to starting?..

      • Zwie

        March 1, 2011 at 8:36 pm

        im sorry steve, but your delusional if you think Paul would even allow monty to make that decision. Watching this game, i can completely agree, chris paul has “checked out” This breaks my heart so much, becuase i became a member of this site becuase of CP3. I am the biggest advocate of CP3 in Henrico, VA. Everywhere i go speak of the greatness that is CP3. And to watch games like this? Is the ULTimATE let down.

        Im not trying to plant seeds, but it has to be obvious to those who have watched the hornets this year,Ever since the All-Star break, Paul has not played anywhere near what we know hes capable of.

        How many of you think, we seeing the next star drawn towards a big city?

  29. nick

    March 1, 2011 at 8:21 pm

    you know i have thought about it many times, but i never said it out loud until tonight, but the hornets really not a good team at all. They beat good teams and lose to the worst teams in the league. It is so hard to be a hornets fan. Its like watching the damn saints. The have no professionalism whatsoever!!!

  30. Where is CP?

    March 1, 2011 at 8:23 pm

    Its hard for Hornets fans to admit, but Chris Paul is the sole reason for the Hornets are struggling. Hes checked out mentally, isnt playing with any sense of urgency or heart, and seems content to take the blame for every bad loss in the locker room. At some point one would hope he will try and fix the situation by playing better. 7 pts and 5 assist against one of the worst teams in the league? Letting Calderon single handedly beat you? Pathetic.
    I love Chris, but maybe its time we seriously entertain the thought of trading him while he is still considered a very valuable asset by the rest of the league. Too many times this year he has just decided not to show up. the hornets have been hot and cold all year, and I blame the inconsistency on their leader, Chris.

  31. OkiThor

    March 1, 2011 at 8:24 pm

    Great game by JC3 tonight.

  32. chung

    March 1, 2011 at 8:25 pm

    This is getting sadder and sadder. I keep waiting for a CP3 breakthrough that never arrives. Its frustratingly comparable to watching Julian Wright develop.

  33. Madtown 27

    March 1, 2011 at 8:27 pm

    The last two loses are on our harbinger.

  34. paul

    March 1, 2011 at 8:27 pm

    Here is the reality…time goes by fast and even IF your WERE the best, get over it.
    There is a constant marching up your backside of talented, ahrd working kids ready, with NO fear, to dethrone you.
    We JUST saw another explosion tonight against our players.
    And if we continue to rely upon the same ol same ol, nobody is going to feel bad about the failure.
    Sorry, but Monty feels, as many do on this sight, that CP3 and the small game is the yellow brick road.
    It ain’t.
    And it will be even uglier when playoffs start.
    They play meaner, tougher under the basket BBall.

    Look back and see how Paul played his last 2 games with Gray.
    Let us all know his percentage and game.
    I am curiuos, but I think he played better.

    • paul

      March 1, 2011 at 8:27 pm

      the reason, if true, is that he gets more protection and he needs this these days.

  35. Dontae

    March 1, 2011 at 8:33 pm

    Chris Paul do something! 7 pts and 5 assts.

  36. QueenBee

    March 1, 2011 at 8:33 pm

    From now on, give the advantage to the opposing point guards. I turned that game off after the 1st qtr. I could already tell it would be a loss. My brother texted to me that they were down 2 84-82 and I told him they’d still lose. You can just tell usually by how the game begins.

  37. QueenBee

    March 1, 2011 at 8:36 pm

    I turned off Hornets/Raptors to go watch the refs try to give the Magic/Knicks game to the Knicks.

    • MaxJD_Nola2NYC

      March 1, 2011 at 8:41 pm

      Damn.. And I got tix to the knicks game tomorrow I’m going to be the only dumbass wearing a CP3 jersey and my teams will get whooped by at least 16 should I even bother going?

  38. Hordan

    March 1, 2011 at 8:38 pm

    I just watched the Hornets lose to a 16 win team. Im going to go throw up.

  39. M

    March 1, 2011 at 8:43 pm

    Jesus Christ, Chris Paul has been terrible. Please, make it end. He just doesn’t care anymore.

  40. L_REAZY

    March 1, 2011 at 8:46 pm

    NOW, will anyone agree with me about my CP3 argument? I’ll wait-and-see, but this is crazy. Jose Calderon destroyed CP3!

    If CP3 isn’t giving us the impressiion that he is trade-able then what is he doing out there? He wants out … his body language says it all.

    L_REAZY

    • MaxJD_Nola2NYC

      March 1, 2011 at 8:50 pm

      U straight trippin’ he’s doing this to himself, missing wide open shots is one thing but not shooting on that last possession and instead looking for someone else to bail him out and take the blame for a miss and a loss is what he was doing.. I know his thinking and right now he’s having psychologival issues crazyyyy

    • nikkoewan

      March 1, 2011 at 8:53 pm

      yes again its a mental issue. not an issue of does he want out or not.

  41. Go Blue

    March 1, 2011 at 8:50 pm

    Seriously, I’m getting depressed watching CP3 play. Whatever is bothering him, someone on that team needs to help with it. I can’t believe we lost to the Raptors. But atleast Carl is looking better each game. It’s so weird having a back up PF/C that can score and defend. Jack looked good tonight also. Seemed like Monty pulled and kept CP3 out the game at times for Jack, and I don’t blame him. Whatever..but hard to be a fan at the moment.

  42. HiMyNameisSteven

    March 1, 2011 at 8:58 pm

    CHRIS PAUL SUCKS god i could have played better than him tonight…..

    really though i think it be beneficial to let Jack take some minutes and give chris a little rest and then tell him to start playing like a champ… he complains about wanting to be on a contendor, well guess what if u gave 100% effort and focused we would be a contendor chris suck it up stop worrying about wanting to get to play with buddies like lebron and melo are doing and deliver for us or i wont be so sad to see you go next year if thats your ultimate desire…

    id like to see belly get some more minutes again he looked pretty effective tonight

  43. Jordan

    March 1, 2011 at 8:58 pm

    Did anyone else see Jose Calderon SCORCH CP3 on a fast break? He went right by him.

    • Jordan

      March 1, 2011 at 8:59 pm

      no way he does that when Cp3 is himself (physically).

  44. mbdtf

    March 1, 2011 at 9:28 pm

    All of our starters had -‘s in the +/- category. Conversely, all of our bench had +’s. Our starters were outscored 74-41 by the Raptors. That’s absolutely terrible. Tomorrow, if the Hornets and Paul play like they did tonight, I’m predicting a 40 point loss and a career high from Billups.

  45. DB

    March 2, 2011 at 8:31 am

    Coming from a Raps fan, this Hornet team is hardly fearful — especially if CP3 is going to check out like he did last night.

    Jose definitely stepped up his game and simply dominated Paul last night. The biggest shock was how he was able to stifle him defensively – Calderon (God bless him) is a turnstile on D so to see him simply shut down Paul all night flabbergasted me!

    To see the normally ‘soft’ Raps win fairly easily and convincingly against one of the league’s supposed upper echelon teams doesn’t bode well…

    Oh, and one more thing on Paul — he’s checked out. We saw it here with Vince and then last year with Bosh after the all-star break — I could see it on his face. His heart and his head are no longer in New Orleans.

    Be worried, Hornet fans. Not only is your team simply not that good, but CP3 is gone as soon as he gets the chance.

    We’ll see you in the lottery in a couple of years…

    • Jordan

      March 2, 2011 at 11:25 am

      you’ve got some nerve coming on this site and calling our team “not that good.”

      I dont fully believe CP is fully checked out yet either.

      • DB

        March 2, 2011 at 12:04 pm

        Nevermind. They’re good. Good enough to become first round fodder for one of the West’s top teams come playoff time, that is (if they get there).

        That was just my honest assessment – sorry you don’t like it. Trust me, I’ve watched the Raps get pummeled all season long now so to witness them just manhandle Paul and the Hornets last night was eye-opening to say the least.

        All I’m saying is that this team simply doesn’t strike fear into their opponents and this roster is, quite bluntly, severely overrated. The team is built to be as good as CP3 is on any particular night — last night, he was horrible.

        I will give you this — the NBA is all about matchups — for whatever reason the Raps seem to always give the Hornets fits (last couple of years) it seems and Calderon always gives Paul all he can handle. I have no idea why this is. So, it’s entirely possible the Hornets return to their winning ways and the debacle in T.O. last night was just an aberration.

        Also, I have to laugh at the fact that this team relies on some kind of significant contribution from a guy like Marco Belinelli who was a train wreck last year on a sub-500 Raptor squad… I will add however that Landry is an absolute beast.

        RE: Paul checking out — again, just what it seemed like to me watching him last night. I’m not the only one who thinks something is going on: http://sports.yahoo.com/nba/blog/ball_dont_lie/post/Behind-the-Box-Score-where-Houston-worked-past-?urn=nba-328618

      • 42

        March 2, 2011 at 1:21 pm

        Opinions are welcome of all sorts, DB.

        When you bring data, analysis, and not disruption to a discussion here, I’ll give you my seat at the table if you don’t have one, figuratively speaking. You see, we can’t afford an actual table, per se . . .

        Welcome.

  46. James Online

    March 2, 2011 at 2:03 pm

    DB: You got one thing right…the Raptors were a train wreck last year. What does that make them this year? Libya? How’s that “young guns” thing hatched in Vegas working out?

    As for Marco’s time last year, he led your ball club in +/- for the year playing for the worst coach in the coldest city in the league. He is now contributing nicely to a playoff team in the tough Western conference. Gave the Hornets life in the second half yesterday while almost everybody else played poorly.

    Oh, how’s Julian Wright doing? Thought I caught him sitting at the end of the bench. Still with you guys? And Jack for Bayless…how did that work out yesterday?

  47. JS

    March 2, 2011 at 3:43 pm

    Either way hes right to a certain degree the team goes as far as Paul and D.West. Last night was just proof of that and that losing streak before the all-star break was proof of that against GS and the Blazers and its astaring to show again. The NBA now is built in the way that you need to win your pg match to win consistently. If your getting beat defensively then that opens up so much for the other team. Hopefully this could be a possible wake up call mentally for CP3 to get back to that form he was playing with those winning streaks.

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