Game On: Kings @ Hornets – the Prodigal Son Returns

Published: March 12, 2011

Matchup: Kings(15-48) @ Hornets(38-29)

Off Efficiency: Kings 100.2(26th), Hornets 103.2(20th)
Def Efficiency: Kings 106.4(19th), Hornets 100.6(5th)

Right before the All-Star break, Tyreke Evans finally gave in to the plantar fascitis in his foot that had been plaguing him all year and sat down for three weeks. A few days after the All-Star break, the Kings acquired Marcus Thornton. It proved to be a good match.

Tyreke Evans plays the same way Dwayne Wade does. He dominates the ball, attacks the rim, over dribbles, and the only set plays he’s interested in get him the ball on the perimeter, and then set screens for him to score off the dribble. Marcus Thornton, of course, is the same sort of offensive player too, except he’s a better deep shooter and much, much worse at drawing fouls.

The result, of course, is Marcus Thornton helping the Kings not miss a beat by letting them play the same familiar brand of basketball they have done all season. Now, whether that’s good or not is severely debatable. (McNamara is screaming “No!!!” off in the distance) The result is a 1-7 record since Thornton has arrived.

Anyways, as to the actual game, the Kings are Golden-state like in their approach. You have no idea what play they are going to run next, because they break plays freely, don’t actually know which play they’ll run next themselves, and most of the team is only interested in getting their hands on the ball and shooting, shooting, shooting. That happens to be the sort of offense that can crack the Hornets carefully executed defense. Sometimes Chaos Wins. (Sounds like a Fantasy novel title)


Hornets: None
Kings: Evans is Out, Udrih is probable(wasn’t with team yesterday due to illness)

Positional Analysis

Going to do this a little differently.  Not a significant change though.

Point: Paul v Udrih
Advantage: Hornets
Paul comes back from his concussion tonight with almost a full week of rest under his belt, and will play either against Udrih, who is recovering from illness and missed practice yesterday, or Luther Head. Udrih has a history of going off against the Hornets, but he’s a Jarrett Jack style point guard, more interested in finishing(which he can do well) than distributing. Head is a shooting guard in a point guard’s body. Paul is the complete package, whether he comes out aggressively shooting or not.

Wings: Belinelli and Ariza v Buckets and Francisco Garcia
Advantage: Kings
This one is a hard one to call. Belinelli has been playing great since the departure of Thornton, but Ariza still looked injured in the last game and went 0-10. Thornton and Garcia are both very good offensive players, and though their defense is awful, if only Belinelli is punishing them for their lapses, this goes in favor of the Kings. Oh, by the way, I have no idea if Green or Belinelli will start this game. I went with Mama Mia after flipping a coin.

Big Men: Okafor and West v DeMarcis Cousins and Samuel Dalembert
Advantage: Hornets
Dalembert shuts down Okafor, but shuts himself down offensively by being terrible. West scores freely on either big men. Cousins either sucks or dominates in the post, depending on his effort that night. Since Cousins is having a down month and getting the ball much less with gunners like Udrih, Thornton and Garcia on the perimeter, I’m very comfortable calling this in favor of the Hornets.

Jack, Landry, Green, Gray, Pondexter v
Jason Thompson, Omri Casspi, Jermaine Taylor, Pooh Jeter
Advantage: Hornets
The Hornets have solidified their rotation for the playoffs at eight men with Gray or Pondexter getting minor situational minutes. This may actually be the strongest bench the Hornets franchise has ever sported. Considering where they were a year ago, that’s pretty amazing. With Landry leaving the Kings, the two players to benefit the most have been Thompson and Casspi, who took over Landry’s minutes and have been playing fairly well. Those two guys do give their bench some offensive punch and rebounding, but defensively, Thompson fouls way too much, and last game Casspi lost his man four times in the same corner on simple back-door cuts. I mean, do it once, okay. Twice, maybe, but four times? In a quarter?

Not scary.

I hope you enjoyed the analysis! I hope you enjoy the game even more. And if you haven’t already, and want to support our site, please donate and get in on some prizes! Oh, and if you can’t donate at this time(believe me, I understand) we still want you to get a shot at the prizes, so post a comment on the Putting out the Hat post and get a chance at some great Hornets gear. Thanks!


  1. AgentZiko

    March 12, 2011 at 12:09 pm

    All I want is a win. That’s all I want for this team tonight. Don’t care how we do it. Just want a win. GEAUX HORNETS!

  2. LSUhornet17

    March 12, 2011 at 12:09 pm

    If you’re Sacramento, don’t you start Dalembert on West after seeing him against Chandler/Noah? Dalembert is not as good as them, but he is build in the same mold. Also, with the way Emeka has been playing offensively, I don’t really worry about Cousins not being able to handle him.

    • Ryan Schwan

      March 12, 2011 at 2:43 pm

      Dalembert doesn’t have the foot-speed of Chandler and Noah. Besides, West did well against Chandler.

  3. CP3nBrees

    March 12, 2011 at 12:38 pm

    Just saw on, Beli was benched last game because of disciplinary reason.

  4. James Online

    March 12, 2011 at 12:49 pm

    Beno Udrih is a shooting guard playing the point only because Tyreke Evans is out, please don’t mislead. He’s not a “shoot first” type player at all. As for the guard situation in Sacto, believe me if Thornton keeps jacking up the number of shots he’s doing now after Tyreke comes back, there will be massive friction. They’re relying on him now because both Evans and Udrih have been out.

    Marco has been so good over this stretch of games because he has a different mentality with Paul out. Monty depends on him more for scoring and ball handling, rebounding, and defense. He’s been almost turnover free and has been the Hornets’ best defender during this stretch while hitting a high percentage of shots, including threes. His constant motion and threat from distance has made him the centerpiece of the offense in the last few games, except of course when Jarret Jack is dominating the ball and refusing to look for Marco (even after being told to do so by Monty).

    It will be interesting to see how things flow with Chris back on the floor. David West will start to get the ball often and where he needs it. The Paul-West tag team offense may reappear, and if so let’s see what happens with everyone else.

    Willie Green: a competent but ordinary player. Marco: skilled, determined, and with a huge upside that takes him out of the realm of ordinary. Go Marco!

    • Kenny

      March 13, 2011 at 11:54 am

      I think your comments are right on. I would prefer to see Willie’s minutes reduced and simply rotate CP, Marco, and Jack as needed. Same for Ariza, with the bulk of minutes going to Quincy, to find out if his potential is for real. No more Thornton, so I am going to have to get over it.

  5. JCS

    March 12, 2011 at 1:06 pm

    The Prodigal Son? More like the Golden Calf. Both Tyson and Peja did more for this team, than that kid. Anyway, I’m looking forward to a win of biblical proportions. GEUX HORNETS.

    • 42

      March 12, 2011 at 3:08 pm

      The parable of the prodigal son is about a child with incredible abilities that squanders it, then returns home as a contrite adult. Thornton didn’t exactly leave town on his own, and it yet to be seen what will become of his tremendous talents, but it’s an apt comparison.

      The golden calf, however, was an inanimate idol created to satisfy those while a more holy leader was absent, and criciticism of it is actually criticism of those who worshipped it. Thus, it is not an apt comparison . . . unless you are trying to insult the fans of Thornton here.

      I’m pretty sure it’s offensive when you intend to be so, regarless of whether you camoflage it in biblical references so that people gloss over it.

      Yes, I’m very sure about that.

  6. Gec

    March 12, 2011 at 1:23 pm

    He’s back baby, he’s back!

  7. lancebrou68

    March 12, 2011 at 1:35 pm

    he was just being sarcastic JCS

    • JCS

      March 12, 2011 at 3:24 pm

      I work for a religious org and attend church twice a week, so perhaps I am more sensitive about religion than the next guy. Thus if someone praises the prince of darkness, that’s their prerogative – I just don’t want anything to do with them, because they disgust me. As for Marcus Thorton, I just think with the way he has been exalted, if you’re going to use a reference from the bible it would be more fitting to use the Golden Calf.

  8. Gec

    March 12, 2011 at 2:03 pm

    What about “coaching advantage” in the preview? And a new poll 😛

  9. Calabrone Viola

    March 12, 2011 at 2:24 pm

    Mamma mia don’t start but play the game?
    Thank you in advance for the reply.

    • Ryan Schwan

      March 12, 2011 at 2:48 pm

      He’ll get good minutes. Monty plays whichever SG has it going. That means sometimes Marco will play 16 minutes, sometimes he’ll play 32. I have no idea which will happen in each game.

      • Calabrone Viola

        March 12, 2011 at 3:22 pm

        Thank you (Grazie) Ryan!

      • TopherPrice

        March 12, 2011 at 6:30 pm

        But you know as well Ryan, Monty also has a habit of losing track of who is the got hand and not changing the lineup. It has happened to Marco, Marcus, and Willie this year. They go off for 70-80% in the first half and then play a whole 4 minutes in the second half and the Hornets lose by 6-10.

        I hope he continues to grow as a head coach and these lapses become fewer and further between.

      • 42

        March 12, 2011 at 6:51 pm

        If Marcus is a bit behind on his defense, should we expect him to be attacked constantly?

  10. Jordan

    March 12, 2011 at 3:06 pm

    Did anyone else realize Big Belly is only 24?

    • Jordan

      March 12, 2011 at 3:07 pm


    • Nik

      March 12, 2011 at 4:36 pm

      hey definately fits the bill of young but experienced…

      • f.g. di bene

        March 12, 2011 at 6:20 pm

        yes, I saw him play for the first time in bologna, in the italian A league, when he was just 16….

  11. Rocco

    March 12, 2011 at 5:52 pm

    Beli’s birthday is 3/25/86. He’ll be a quartercenturian in a couple of weeks. Maybe a nice “beli-head” as agift? lol..Hey Marco buono compleanno!

  12. Go Blue

    March 12, 2011 at 6:22 pm

    For the people who are in NOLA that watch the games on CST, is this game available in HD?

  13. Thad

    March 12, 2011 at 7:06 pm

    To answer your question no it’s not.

  14. Gec

    March 12, 2011 at 7:27 pm

    please cp3, drive once to the hoop. Just one time all the way to the hole for a bank-runner

  15. Davey

    March 12, 2011 at 7:28 pm

    Just love watching Landry’s gritty patience.

  16. Bee-fense

    March 12, 2011 at 7:33 pm

    Hornets getting a lot of favorable foul calls early

  17. Bywas2001hornets4ever225

    March 12, 2011 at 7:33 pm

    Dat ball was on the way up! It was clear as day, bull call against landry

  18. Bywas2001hornets4ever225

    March 12, 2011 at 7:38 pm

    Ariza: 1 shot attempt in 1 quarter! Excellent

  19. Bee-fense

    March 12, 2011 at 7:38 pm


  20. Gec

    March 12, 2011 at 7:39 pm

    WTF with this superstar calls for Cousins?!

    • mbdtf

      March 12, 2011 at 7:44 pm

      Yeah, this is ridiculous. He literally gets every call.

      • QueenBee

        March 12, 2011 at 7:50 pm

        Officials are probably scared he’s going to snap on them. They know he ain’t wrapped too tight. LOL.

  21. mbdtf

    March 12, 2011 at 7:42 pm

    Landry is the man!

  22. tyler

    March 12, 2011 at 7:51 pm

    To be onest I think Smith is better than Gray

  23. Bywas2001hornets4ever225

    March 12, 2011 at 7:52 pm

    This tandom of smith and gray is really gettin on my nerves! But I cant lie some of the calls against those 2 are complete bull crap and enough to discourage any player

    • QueenBee

      March 12, 2011 at 8:00 pm

      “But I cant lie some of the calls against those 2 are complete bull crap and enough to discourage any player”

      I agree.

  24. QueenBee

    March 12, 2011 at 8:01 pm

    With all these whistles this game is going to take 3-1/2 hrs long.

  25. QueenBee

    March 12, 2011 at 8:04 pm

    Hornets act like they’re scared to play at the rim. Draw fouls and make those funky refs blow the whisle.


  26. QueenBee

    March 12, 2011 at 8:04 pm

    CP3 AND 1!

  27. QueenBee

    March 12, 2011 at 8:05 pm

    He didn’t get the 1 though. 🙁

  28. Gec

    March 12, 2011 at 8:06 pm

    CP3 attacking the basket 😀
    Get some rebound hornets!!

  29. QueenBee

    March 12, 2011 at 8:07 pm

    Another CP3 And 1! Let’s geaux!

  30. Bee-fense

    March 12, 2011 at 8:10 pm

    I love seeing Chris attack like this

  31. QueenBee

    March 12, 2011 at 8:12 pm

    LOL @ CP3 yelling to Carl that Thornton is “going one on one everytime” “he ain’t passing”. LOL!!!

    • Nik

      March 12, 2011 at 8:17 pm

      MT5 ain’t passin for NO BODY

  32. QueenBee

    March 12, 2011 at 8:14 pm

    That should indeed be a 3rd foul on Cousins. The refs are scared of him.

  33. QueenBee

    March 12, 2011 at 8:15 pm

    NBA officials are embarrassing.

    • JCS

      March 12, 2011 at 8:34 pm


  34. Gec

    March 12, 2011 at 8:16 pm

    Landry 12 – Marcus 12

  35. QueenBee

    March 12, 2011 at 8:33 pm

    These refs sure are trying to make this game about themselves. SMH.

    • JCS

      March 12, 2011 at 8:36 pm

      LMAO…Me n’ Tiago are sitting here cracking up reading your comments.

  36. QueenBee

    March 12, 2011 at 8:34 pm

    All Hornets big men will probably foul out tonite seeing the calls going against them. SMH.

  37. QueenBee

    March 12, 2011 at 8:35 pm

    Hornets need to go on like a 20-2 run or something. LOL!

  38. CP3nBrees

    March 12, 2011 at 8:35 pm

    Any online TV that is working…?

  39. mbdtf

    March 12, 2011 at 8:38 pm

    We just straight up can’t guard this team for some reason.

  40. Schmide234

    March 12, 2011 at 8:41 pm

    Ariza has looked horrible tonight…just horrible. his defense hasnt even been too great. Average defense and bad offense equals TERRIBLE

    • Gec

      March 12, 2011 at 9:08 pm

      great!! Great D, good Offense, effort and CP3!!! Hornets Basketball!!!!!!!!!!!

  41. Gec

    March 12, 2011 at 8:49 pm

    Marcus is killing us

    • QueenBee

      March 12, 2011 at 8:54 pm

      All former Hornets play hard against the Hornets.

  42. mbdtf

    March 12, 2011 at 8:54 pm

    We NEED this win. Come on, fellas. Let’s have a strong 4th!

  43. James Grayson

    March 12, 2011 at 8:57 pm

    I love losing to one of the worst teams in the league…

  44. mbdtf

    March 12, 2011 at 8:59 pm

    CP3 😀

  45. QueenBee

    March 12, 2011 at 9:07 pm

    CP on fire.

  46. Go Blue

    March 12, 2011 at 9:07 pm

    I miss this CP3. Woooooooooooooooooooooo!!! Just 3 rebounds off a triple double!

  47. seb

    March 12, 2011 at 9:07 pm

    CP3 IS BACK BABY!!! If he can play at a high level with the way the rest of the team has been playing, then we may be in for an exiting post season!!!

  48. nikkoewan

    March 12, 2011 at 9:10 pm

    CP3 playing like CP3 circa 0709.

  49. Gec

    March 12, 2011 at 9:13 pm


  50. Bywas2001hornets4ever225

    March 12, 2011 at 9:15 pm

    I called it!(in my head) I knew we wud pull away in the 4th

  51. QueenBee

    March 12, 2011 at 9:15 pm

    Cousins is a good player. He’ll probably be even better once he matures.

  52. Davey

    March 12, 2011 at 9:19 pm

    Why are Paul and West still in the game?

  53. mbdtf

    March 12, 2011 at 9:23 pm

    33 pts, 15 ast, 7 reb, 5 stl


    • Mark

      March 12, 2011 at 9:27 pm

      Holy shiz Yeezy, CP is amazing.

  54. tyler

    March 12, 2011 at 9:26 pm

    wow i miss marcus

    • tyler

      March 12, 2011 at 9:38 pm

      But I like Landry too

  55. Mark

    March 12, 2011 at 9:31 pm

    Underrated stat of the night: Landry with 10-11 FT.

  56. alika32

    March 12, 2011 at 9:36 pm

    Marcus would have not got the same playing time, or same amount of points with the hornets in this game. I do miss the guy, but I think Landry Helps us so much more!

    • Kenny

      March 13, 2011 at 11:58 am

      I would rather have both.

  57. nikkoewan

    March 12, 2011 at 9:39 pm

    focus on the next game(DEN), an expected win(in my opinion).

    Just needs to be said:
    Cp3 box score statistics:
    33 PTs, 15 assists, 7 rebounds, 5 steals 57% FG, 86% FT, added 1 3ptm on just 2 turnovers. impressive as it is. but look at the advanced stat.

    1.57 Point per shot, 7.5 ast/to ratio, 68.5 TS%, 57.51% Assist Rate on JUST 7.66 Turnover rate. WOW OH WOW.

    • JayRey

      March 13, 2011 at 12:45 am

      Even when Paul is aggressive, he still manages to be super efficient!!

  58. Chuck

    March 12, 2011 at 10:20 pm

    3 observations:

    1) OMGCP3!!!!
    2) Carl Landry picked a really good night to score 20 to counter Thornton’s points
    3) Demarcus Cousins is the next Zach Randolph. And I mean that in a good way

  59. tyler

    March 12, 2011 at 10:28 pm

    dallas lost so if lose two me games we would have to play them instead of the lakers

    • tyler

      March 12, 2011 at 10:30 pm

      dallas lost so if they lose two moe games we would have to play them instead of the lakers

  60. Hornet Seantonio

    March 12, 2011 at 10:36 pm

    Just got home from the game all i have to say is…..HES BAAAAAAACCCCKKKK!!!!!!!!!!!!

  61. 42

    March 12, 2011 at 10:50 pm

    No anti-mascot . . .

  62. nikkoewan

    March 12, 2011 at 10:52 pm

    just tweeted this, but if you’re not following me…
    Magic number for the Hornets:
    Den – 17
    Por – 15
    Grizzlies – 13
    Phoenix – 14
    Utah – 11
    Rockets – 10

    Hornets need to reduce magic numbers to at least 3 teams to 0.
    Note: Magic number is the number of hornets wins added with team x loses for a team to be assured to have a better record(therefore playoff berth) than that team.

    if hornets finish the season 11 – 3, with’d have a high chance of making the playoffs. is that possible?

    • 42

      March 12, 2011 at 10:57 pm

      We play many of those team in our last 14. Can be good, can be bad. It’s good if we are good, bad if we are bad.

      So which are we?

      We are good.

      Say it again.

      We are good.

    • nikkoewan

      March 12, 2011 at 11:13 pm

      Hornets next 14 games:DEN, PHO, BOS,@UTH,@PHO,@LA, POR, MEM, IND, HOU, PHO,@MEM, UTH,@DAL.

      my prediction? W, W, L, W, W, L, W, W, W, W, W, L, W, W

      that’s 11 – 3 making our record 50 – 32. if that’s the case, we are assured of AT LEAST the 8th spot. depending on how Den, Portland and Grizzlies finish their season(5 Den losses lifts us to at least ONE spot higher, 3 Portland loses lifts us to at least another one spot, and one grizzlies lost lifts us to at least 1 another spot).

  63. coach44

    March 12, 2011 at 11:06 pm

    Man, it was really quiet at the Hive tonight. The crowd couldn’t get the team fired up, and the team couldn’t put enough defensive stops together to get the crowd fired up until their run in the 4th quarter. I just cannot figure out why the Hornets can’t bring it against bad teams, but they usually seem to play so well against good teams. BTW, 2 hornets sth sitting by me tonight with Kings Thornton jerseys on. Took em off in the middle of the 4th.

    • Thornton's Thunder

      March 13, 2011 at 10:36 pm

      Coach 44…great observation, particularly when it was all for the arena to see (Nothing to hide here…nothing WHATSOEVER). Everyone (except for you) know that we are Marcus Thornton Fans!!! We are very proud of that and will continue to be! What I do find interesting is that you went out of your way to mention that; however, you failed to mention…(those same two Hornets’ STH, me being one of them, also cheered for our Hornets team each and everytime we scored, or did anything worth cheering for). Just a lil detail that folks like you generally leave out:) We’re very proud of Marcus, and we don’t particularly care what others think as much as he care that HE knows we are his true fans! We’re happy the Hornets did well, but we are equally excited that our friend played well! Go Marcus!!!! Geaux Hornets!!!

      • Thornton's Thunder

        March 13, 2011 at 10:39 pm

        PS…what you should have stated was that we were two Hornets fans wearing MARCUS THORNTON jerseys! Goodnight!

      • Thornton's Thunder

        March 14, 2011 at 1:12 pm

        And my jersey was taken off @ halftime! But I waved it proudly each and everytime MARCUS did something exciting! FTR, my jersey is autographed, so when my brain kicked in…I felt more comfortable waving rather than wearing…my husband kept HIS jersey on!!!! Just a few more details to add to your point! (Sorry, I wish I’d posted all comments in same comment…but I keep remembering things)… I’m done!

  64. James Grayson

    March 12, 2011 at 11:16 pm

    Good win for the Hornets, that 18-2 run was crucial as the boys clamped down of defense. One of the best offensive games of the season for the Hornets. Let’s go get them Nuggets!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

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