Nuggets three point barrage buries Hornets

By:
Published: March 14, 2011

Five minutes into the third quarter, Kenton Martin hit a step back, fall away jump shot over David West to put the Nuggets up by 17 points. Monty Williams couldn’t do anything but laugh; he knew that it was just one of those nights. The second and third quarters saw the Nuggets score a combined 71 points and they seemingly hit everything they threw up at the basket. New Orleans simply does not have the firepower to keep up with a team hitting on all cylinders like that, and the result was a 114-103 loss at the hands of the Nuggets.

Chris Paul’s stat line was superb tonight (27pts, 10ast, 7 stls, and 5 rebs), but it was the Nuggets’ point guards who stole the show.  Both had double-double, as Ty Lawson went for 23 and 10 and Ray Felton came off the bench to get 22 and 12. Once Denver went to their two point guard lineup, the game was essentially over, as they just sliced and diced the Hornets defense to shreds. Those two were the catalysts for the second quarter explosion by Denver, and they never let their foot off the pedal.

The Hornets were simply outplayed in every aspect, and truth be told, if it were not for CP3, this game might have looked a lot like a certain playoff game from years back that we shall not mention. Denver was more physical, they were quicker, they showed more skill, and they just seemed to want it more. In all honesty, they look a lot like the Hornets team who started the season- the one with a chip on its shoulder; the one that everybody doubted. Now Denver has that chip after people assumed they would fade following the Carmelo trade. Not gonna happen. This team is for real.

Other Notes and Observations:

- How often do you see a starter get 6 minutes? Unless he is in foul trouble or gets injured, it is pretty rare, but that is what Gary Forbes got tonight. Sure, you can play two PG’s together for 35 minutes, but you shouldn’t dare start them!

- Since coming over from New York, Felton and Chandler were averaging a combined two made 3′s per game on 5.6 attempts. Tonight? Well, they go 10-14 of course. Just one of those games.

- Kenyon continues to be a Fluffy Stopper. Thankfully, there is no way the Hornets could meet Denver in the first round.

- Mek still doesn’t look right. Remember the stretch in December and January where we could legitimately argue Emeka was playing like a top 3 center? He is not back to that level yet.

- Nuggets turn the ball over 21 times and the Hornets only get 7 fast break points. If you are the other team, who are you worried about on this roster besides CP3 in transition?

- The stat sheet says Ariza only had three turnovers, but he always seemed to be fumbling the ball. There is just no fluidity in his offensive game, and to be honest, he looks like he has lost nearly all the confidence he had built up back in January.

- Uh, it could have been worse. Al Harrington could have been on our team.

- I know this is a Hornets site, but give credit where credit is due. Nuggets played well and they are a fun team to watch. If I’m a Nuggets fan, I am liking the trade more and more each day, especially since I know deep down that Melo is not the #1 guy on a title team and I wasn’t going to get anyone better than him. This team will be a tough out in the playoffs.

- As I write this, Thornton is 10-14 with 29 points in the third quarter. Please leave him out of the comments. Please.

- So many great caps tonight for the pic, don’t know how to pick a winner. So I let the fans vote and they went with “Am I Kenyon Martin yet?” by cameronismyname. Nicely done.

- Now two games back of Denver, but we still own the tiebreaker. Denver has a rough stretch of games, but they are playing well. Honestly, it is looking more and more like 6th or 7th seed, where we hope to get Dallas and dodge LA.

- Don’t forget to enter the Hornets247 Bracket Challenge and Donate if you can. Have a good night, and let’s get this one back against Phoenix on Wednesday night.

59 comments
Kenny
Kenny

You are absolutely right. Belli is the better choice. Must have had another mistroke on my keyboard. Anyway, with that management and that team, we would only need a quality role player @ center and then go post 60 wins.

nikkoewan
nikkoewan

people are too enamored with potential like its something that can easily be harnessed. pondexter has shown us nothing such that we could put him in the starting 5 or give him significantly more minutes. check the article from atthehive. although, the analysis is incomplete, you can completely understand what he's saying. Again, i say, talent is useless if you can't mesh them together. Paul and West mesh together like peanut butter and jam. Thornton on the other hand, is like water and oil to those two. Monty tried to tweak his play style, one where he can play with those two(as an explosive 6th man). we saw that for a few games. but you could never quite feel the comfort level marcus had with Paul/West/Monty. Now who would you rather have, Marcus or those 3? and btw, nobody has yet to explain my dilemma.

Kenny
Kenny

For your general amusement, I'll tell you who I would rather have; Gm Jeff Bower, Head Coach Avery Johnson, Starting 5: West, Pondexter, Mek, CP, and Thornton Bench: Jason Smith, Carl Landry, Darren Collison, Jarret Jack Comments?

Sincerely Yours96
Sincerely Yours96

@Nikko one last thing on Marcus. What was the purpose of trading all that potential if Landry isnt guranteed to resign? He WONT get us any further than the second round, unlikely we get to WCF and we cud do 2nd round wit Marcus. And we are left with no talented two guard

Just A Fan
Just A Fan

Remember he only has 8 more wins than Bower and that's with Paul basically all season and supposedly a bunch of players that are suppose to be improvments. I just don't see it. Imagine Monty's record without Paul for over half a season and the so called improvements.

JCS
JCS

What is the point of imagining a franchise player is out for half a season? And what NBA teams do Bowser and Tipper Floyd currently work for?

nikkoewan
nikkoewan

JCS, i think the comparison stems from Ziko's comments on Thornton in relation to Jackson and Derek Fisher. To NOT be able to compare Jackson and Monty is just wrong, IMO. what difference do they have in their job descriptions? HM? Monty's an NBA coach right? Jackson's an NBA coach too right? is it the 11 titles Jackson has? so does that mean we can't criticize Jackson? so we think he's perfect. I say bullshit. Then what say do we have to compare Kobe to Jordan? Kobe's awards pale in comparison to Jordan's. or what say do we have to compare Derrick Rose to CP3 or to DWill when the kid hasn't done ANYTHING to their levels? Even the most perfect athelete/coach/gm etc.. is criticized, even Jordan. And with the Bowser thing, I thank him only because he let the trade values of both Darren Collison and Marcus Thornton go up. Other than that, i was not happy with his regime. But i'm a fan, and i wish nothing but improvement from our team. I prayed Bowser would sign that player, trade for that player, draft this player, etc etc.. but if he didn't do it, I'll criticize and move on. I'm doing the same to Monty and Demps. Although both of them haven't been spot on in their jobs, they are better than what we had last year and the year before(comparing GM AND COACH, i though BScott was excellent in his first 4 years before the tragedy of Bobby Brown but Bower really pulled his shine down.) OH BTW, if you're going to use the words "given the circumstances", then can I say, given the circumstances, has Monty and Demps really done a bad job? Rookie coach/GM, turmoil and uncertainty of ownership, question marks regarding DWest and Paul's future PLUS the fact that we're playing not only in the toughest division in the league but also in the toughest conference? yeah. Monty's defensive settings are great. the effort is not consistent. There's a difference. The improvement we can ask of Monty is knowing which buttons to push to motivate his team to defend better and improvement on time/game management, both of which seem to be really achievable. Watch the Denver game. At first, players were defending well, the shots were just raining down like manna from heaven(pun on KHAN!). After a few threes, the effort seemed to be lost. I agree though, don't want to see the Lakers in the playoffs, any other top 4 seed is fair game in my opinion, especially Dallas.

JCS
JCS

Given the circumstance, Bowser was an egregious failure which is why his no-good sidekick, Tipper, bailed out on him before the end of the season. Had he stayed for the saga of failure that was Bowser's coaching, he too would have been fired from the club and booted straight from the bayou. That being said, Monty has done a better job than Bowser, but what is the point in comparing an interim flunkie to a full-time coach? Their resumes wouldn't even be in the same stack, b/c Monty has player-coach experience from college to the pros that Bowser does not. As to whether Monty should be compared to Phil Jackson, I respectfully disagree. However, I have never read nor heard anyone make that comparison, so I'm not sure where it came from. Nevertheless, Bowser is gone from the Hornets as he is the NBA in general. Knowing this, people need to learn to let things go.

OkiThor
OkiThor

I think for comparison sake. Most people didn't defend Bower last year, but given the circumstance did he really do that bad of a job? Does Monty deserve the amount of respect ---i.e comparing his coaching to Phil Jackson --- that he gets from his most avid supporters on this site? Is the defense really as good as just about everyone claims. We know the offense and rebounding are bad. I think playoff performance will answer some of these questions. I don't want to see the Lakers in the first round. I think we can make some noise with anyone else.

OkiThor
OkiThor

Interesting point Fan. If he only scores 8 more wins I guess judgement would depend on playoff performance. I know Paul and West will bring it playoff time. What about the rest of the team, including Monty?

Nithenz
Nithenz

and i was confortable with the Game On wich said no to worry about 3pters with Gallinari and Afflalo out... SMH

Just A Fan
Just A Fan

I've noticed when other people complain about Monty no one bashes them. I wonder why? Nikko you might want to change your prediction if the Hornets last 14 games. Just trying to give you an out. But like I have said before Monty just isn't head coach material. He still does not know how to rotate players. Saying he is a rookie just is not acceptable this late in a season. You should at the VERY LEAST know your team by now Playoffs...Playoffs....Did you say playoffs.

nikkoewan
nikkoewan

im sticking with them. i got the denver wrong, let's see the other games. they are predictions for a reason, they can be right or wrong. Again, nobody understands the difficulty of coaching a team - not you, not me. So to say that "you should at the very least know your team by now" is absurd. What grounds do you have of saying that? i still say playoffs. Playoffs. Playoffs. Playoffs. I'm no chicken, i won't "out" my predictions. I'll gladly admit i'm wrong. Unlike you, who seem to quiet down when Monty does something good, and to rage on when he does something bad. and BTW, Monty's rotations are based on matchups. I don't particularly like it, but thats how he rolls right now. 39 out of 69 games he gets it right, 30 out of the other 69 he gets it wrong. Let me see you do rotations, just a fan of some unknown team and most probably not of the hornets.

nikkoewan
nikkoewan

hopefully, Monty learns how to not only matchup well in most nights, but also to learn the value of consistent minutes. Improvement, that's all we ask from him.

42
42

No one should be bashing anyone. Everyone should be furthering the discussion on the team, or having fun. I know you and I haven't agreed on every point, but I have never bashed you for making a point. If i'm in error about that, all apologies. Our magic number for the playoffs went down to 12 yesterday, despite the loss. The playoffs are still the likely destination for us. As far as rotations, I'm left scratching my head at times. I will not pass judgment on him until next season. That's just me. I'm a skeptic.

DBeard1906
DBeard1906

Please explain the magic number to me. It has come up alot lately.

42
42

Certainly. What is commonly referred to as the magic number for something is the number of favorable outcomes necessary involving a pair of teams so that one of them ends up in a favorable position. For instance, consider us and phoenix. For us to end up at least a game ahead of Phoenix, we need to win games and they need to lose games. Thus, the magic number is a function of our wins and their losses. As our wins rise, we move closer to a point where they can not surpass us. The same is true as their losses mount. Here, I'm discussing this in terms of avoiding ties in the standings, as well. You compare this number to the number of games yet to be played by the teams to get a sense of difficulty. For instance, we cannot pass San An. It will be very difficult to pass Dallas. To get a magic number for the playoffs, you simply take the 7th smallest magic number of your team vs the others in the conference, and similarly for other positions. It can be a bear, but a spreadsheet helps. Let me know if you want more, or need more clarity. I'm sneaking this in at work, so don't be shy about knocking this comment.

James Online
James Online

11,000 fans show up for a game against a contender in the Western conference in the heat of playoff positioning late in the season (no football)? Jindhal comes up with millions (while cutting jobs) to prop up a failing franchise? We're ready for the Hornets out here in San Jose! You're all invited.

42
42

Thanks for the hospitality. This team or another could end up in San Jose, sure. I think your grasp of the entirety of the issue is poor, based on this comment. I will personnally put together a post about this in the coming weeks, probably in the offseason. Remind me if I'm foot-dragging.

NolaHog
NolaHog

I think about this issue a lot, as well. I look forward to reading your post.

James Online
James Online

Not much to grasp, actually. Just look at the attendance figures, salaries, national economy, Louisiana economy, NBA ownership of the franchise, Paul/West uncertainty.

42
42

What about them?

kempleton
kempleton

I believe several things did not look good last night! 1- I think We were sloppy on offense (especially at the beginning). Trevor fumbled a lot, D-West was simply on a bad night, sometimes CP3 slows down the game a lot (that's why we only have 7 pts off 21 Denver turnovers) 2- I think We were sloppy on defense. Emeka was not good, Gray got humiliated by Birdman, we gave away too many rebounds, did not stick with them at the perimeter (They made incredible contested 3's but some of them were simply not contested at all!) 3- We play PHX and Boston at home, then we have a nice 4-day break followed by Jazz and Suns (back-to-back), Lakers and Blazers to close the month. That is a tough stretch. We are healthy now, we need to watch some tapes (hmm maybe just the tape of last night's game would do it. :) in order to make necessary improvements especially on defense! We definitely don't want the next 30 days to be like December or February. On the contrary, we definitely would want to finish the season with a nice form which should give us the push for the 2nd round of playoffs. Not every game will be like last night's. (only 6 points from D-West on 2/9 FG!) But, something was not right...

BoxOnTop
BoxOnTop

Did anyone see Jason Smith going off in the fourth?

NolaHog
NolaHog

I was like, "OPEN THE FLOODGATES, SMITH!"

Holy Cow
Holy Cow

I cringe every time I see Ariza get the ball on the wing. If he's not clanking a jumper he's driving to the lane and getting stripped, tied up or failing to finish. It seems like the only time he is effective is when he catches the ball on the move slashing to the basket. However, if we don't have a consistent outside threat to open up that game, he will continue to be largely ineffiective. Defensively, it looks like we are back to making some really bad switches and rotatitions. Fluffy consistently steps out to switch in the high post then just stands there and either allows a blow by or his big winds up getting an easy bucket on the dump off. Prior to last night's game Monty talked about being disciiplined and making teams play our game. Then, we go out and get into a streetball game with a team we have no hope of keeping up with. Finally, we need Okafor to avoid getting in early foul trouble. It seems like the last few games he has two fouls in the first four minutes of the game.

QueenBee
QueenBee

"Fluffy consistently steps out to switch in the high post then just stands there and either allows a blow by or his big winds up getting an easy bucket on the dump off." Last night I sat and watched the ball head towards going out of bounds on the baseline and West just standing there watching it while a Nugget swoops in and prevents the ball from going out of bounds as if to say to West "if you don't wanna get it, I will", and the Nuggets then go to the other end of the court and drain 1 of their many 3 pointers. SMH.

QueenBee
QueenBee

Looking towards the game against the Suns..... Nash says he expects to play (of course he does, all players seem to like to return from injury against the Hornets) and Emeka will need to stay out of foul trouble. Can't have Gortat looking for another career high in rebounds. LOL. I shutter everytime I think about that goaltending non-call in the last meeting. Hahaha.

chung
chung

We have always known Thornton was capable of such outbursts. It is a shame he didn't get more chances when he was here. the kings play a bunch of young players and udrich. cant expect them to be much better than 2-8

nikkoewan
nikkoewan

forget 2 and 8, how can you explain the HUGE difference in both offensive and defensive efficiency when he's on the court versus off the court? Fact of the matter is, he's style of play right now doesn't suit that of a winning team: too uncontrolled too independent of the overall concept. I love him as a player and its a shame he couldn't do all of that in a more controlled environment.

nikkoewan
nikkoewan

i'm sorry MM i knew people would bash the Hornets after that 42. (not referencing 42 the user but 42 scored). anyway, won't happen again. just a slip of the finger

Monty'sDoghouse
Monty'sDoghouse

Yeah, 21.3 PER. 49% from the field, 44% from 3. Must be all Marcus' fault, especially on the offensive side cause he dominates the ball so much. I'm going to assume you haven't watch a single Kings game. Cause he plays off the ball in an offense with a black hole named Demarcus Cousins. The entire starting lineup (including MT5) plays crappy defense, ESPECIALLY the starting PG (Udrih/Head). Here's a stat. That 21.3 PER as a King is double almost every single SG on our roster and is good for top 25 in the league (albeit it's a 10 game sample). In case you haven't noticed, Jarrett Jack couldn't guard anybody tonight. But let's blindly defend Monty Williams at every turn. Don't be mad that Monty refused to unleash the beast and now that beast is ripping people apart elsewhere. It's fine. We're not asking you to. But for a team that can't buy a bucket for 5-9 minutes at a time on a seemingly nightly basis, well, you kind of wonder what that 22 ppg, 21.5 PER scorer is doing over there. Can't blame people for that. This is Monty Williams' very own Byron Scott-esque failure from the beginning. Thank you for shipping our 2nd most talented player out the door for a backup big that Monty doesn't even know how to play. Why can't we see Landry at the 3 again? Kind of odd, considering we got slaughtered on the boards last night and Landry has the footspeed to at least keep guys in front of him. I know most people try to overcompensate for Monty for whatever reason, but if you sat back and looked at our record, it is what you should have expected or worse to start the season if CP3 were only going to miss 2 games (concussion no less). Our team has as much mental toughness as our coach and right now it's almost nonexistent. Sorry, if people are going to talk about it (especially bashing MT's play as a King LOL), I'll give my say. I was going to stay away from it. I still love Belinelli for that hard foul vs big D. When the going gets tough, the tough get shipped to Sacramento. That's the motto.

JCS
JCS

What parade are you talking about and where are the freebies? Also, if Monty and Demps are incompetent, then what does that make Bowser and Tipper Floyd? Mildly retarded? Hornets are making the playoffs this season as 5 or 6 seed, which is a vast improvement from the toilet bowl those two stooges had them in last season. If you want to root for a aimless team with no future, then go to SacramentoQueens.com. This is site is for Hornets fans, not trolls who worship stat inflating players from the Pathetic Division of the league.

Kenny
Kenny

I won't defend Monty or Demps either. They peed in the parade. And, I won't let the Thornton trade go away quietly. This is America, there are no freebees. These two incompetent people must be held accountable. Generally, when you screw up on the order of magnitude which they have, you lose your job. Once again, Landry is a fine addition, but you don't trade a Ferrari for a Toyota. Maybe Landry could have been acquired for a draft choice. This is how they intend to build a playoff contender, by trading away talented players with enormous potential. When will Quincy get extended PT? When Ariza goes 2 for 13. He should be playing with the starters, and lets find out what he's got. Man this stuff is hard to watch.

JCS
JCS

"If someone can explain to me why the hell does that Sacramento team play better when Thornton is off the court rather than on(both offensively and defensively) then i’d gladly say Demps did a FUCK UP JOB for trading Thornton." ------------------------------ I agree with you 100%. These Marcus Stalker-Fans need to take their tails to Sacramento, b/c this site no longer covers him. Furthermore, this site no longer covers the players who actually helped this team, like Tyson and Peja. Those trains have left the station, so people need to get a grip.

nikkoewan
nikkoewan

I'm sorry as well that this marcus thing had to come up again. oh yeah i've watched Kings games. And to think that Demarcus Cousins is a blackhole and Marcus Thornton is not, is just plain stupid. He chucks up 3 pointers and mid range shots 80% of the time. i don't use PER as a way of measuring players, its a totally incomplete stat unlike win shares, or on/off efficiency(compared to raw plus/minus). same with FG and 3pt shooting%. yes his true shooting percentage is good, but look at it in the context of the team. You always seem to defend Marcus the way you seem to think we defend Monty. Too one sided. I'm not defending Monty, in fact i am critical to him as well. didn't you read my comment? i would like to see Monty run more plays for Landry. But you seem to be one sided in your critics and neglect the other side. Marcus Thornton is a scorer, that we know. But can he be a scorer in a winning situation? that we still don't know. to be a scorer in a winning situation is not all about putting points on the board with good percentages. it's all about getting the points in the flow of the offense. If your taking up 26% of your team's total possessions when your on the court, you better make sure you promote ball movement. and thornton's assist rate states otherwise. Jarrett Jack couldn't guard anybody tonight, yes. But he could defend some the night before, and the night before. Marcus Thornton? Uhm, maybe out of a 100 defensive possessions, he's great for 10, ok for 15, below average in 20 and awful the rest. If someone can explain to me why the hell does that Sacramento team play better when Thornton is off the court rather than on(both offensively and defensively) then i'd gladly say Demps did a FUCK UP JOB for trading Thornton. I'm just sick of all this Marcus thing. I've moved on. So should everybody else, because crying over a departed local player will do us no good. Being critical of Monty(instead of demeaning and condescending) will help us. I don't know how, but at least it will. Telling MM the number 42 in reference of Marcus Thornton's 42 point explosion in mockery won't. I'm close to leaving this website just because this Marcus Thornton issue is way out of hand, i'll still support the Bees, probably in my own ways, in a blog of some sort, or through twitter, or facebook. But i can't stand fans lamenting over Marcus Thornton anymore. I appreciate your passion MD. you sometimes raise valid points, some invalid and totally irrational. its natural. but you're inability to be open to something outside of what you think, especially regarding this Marcus-Monty thing, is unhealthy.

lancebrou68
lancebrou68

sorry MM but two words Forty-two

jib
jib

lol looks like he couldn't stop these comments, I noticed one before yours. If you think under Monty's rule he would ever put up 42 for us though then you are a lot more optimistic than me. He's in a situation where he is the premier guard (tyreke is out, but I still expect him to succeed when he comes back) and he is succeeding, great for him, I keep up with him every game, hope to see more of it, but he would never have done that under Monty. Speaking of the unmentionable man, his replacement only had 3 shots? Green had 16, Marco 10, Trevor 9, Jack 8, and Smith 6 shots. Carl Landry is a better offensive player than half of those players, call some plays for the guy.... Monty should know how to call plays for post players though, Lamarcus Aldridge scores in similar ways to Landry, smh

jib
jib

yeah sorry did I talk about him as great? Nah, didn't think so, I just said he was the most talented guard on that team aside from Tyreke. He's in a situation where he can have better opportunities than in New Orleans. I said he would've never played like that here, so good trade. I could go into this more but no need to go too deep into this, my point was more toward why Landry doesn't get more touches.

nikkoewan
nikkoewan

and if your wondering what those 5 stats are? 2-8 W-L column since trade 1.8 assist to TO ratio 1.22 Point per shot 120.6 defensive efficiency on the court compared to 109.8 defensive efficiency off the court --> simply means they play better defensively when he's off the floor. 99.1 offensive efficiency on the court compared to 104.5 offensive efficiency off the court. --> simply means they play better offensively when he's off the floor. How ironic.

nikkoewan
nikkoewan

42 huh? i have another number for you 2 - 8. Guess what that is? Yeah. want me to throw more stats? 1.8 1.22 120.6 compared to 109.8. 99.1 compare to 104.5 stop talking like he's such a GREAT player. I love him as a player, still do. But he's not a hornet anymore. I'm sad that Landry got just 19 minutes of burn with Emeka and West struggling. he could have gotten us to the FT line against Martin and/or Nene. Would love to see Monty learn how to run plays for Landry in the future

nikkoewan
nikkoewan

when i saw that felton had 6 3 pointers, i said its either a blowout or a close game with Denver leading. And i was right

MaxALM
MaxALM

It really sucks not to have any quick wing players. Like, really.

QueenBee
QueenBee

Trevor was quick until he became a Hornet. LOL!

OkiThor
OkiThor

If I remember right we used to have one. What was his name?? I wonder how is doing now?

MaxALM
MaxALM

hmm i forgot. he must be doing well tho

keg
keg

like marcus thorton who just scored 42 points right?