Chris Paul Has All Your Permission Slips, Hornets Beat LA

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Published: April 24, 2011

In a game in which even his own coach was willing to describe as “must win”, Chris Paul delivered one of the most impressive basketball performances of not only his career, but in the entire history of the NBA. Think I’m exaggerating? You didn’t watch the game.

The craziest things about it were that he didn’t score a bucket until 23 minutes in, and was playing with an eye AND thumb injury. Regardless, it was a performance that will never be forgotten by anyone in attendance or watching at home. Lakers fans will close their eyes tonight and see Chris Paul crossovers until they awake in the morning. Tomorrow they’ll be flashing back to it all day.

CP3 was out-jumping everyone in sight for rebounds, successfully defending Andrew Bynum when need be, getting the crucial points when the Hornets needed them, and even setting up Mbenga on a fast Mbreak. He finished by closing the game just like everyone knew he would, scoring 14 on only five shots in the final quarter. When he wanted the ball, he just went and got it. In fact, he just did whatever he wanted all night long. This CP3 is even better than CP3 from the 2008 playoffs. Tonight was even better than his game one performance, and the team needed every bit of it.

The stat line of 27 on 14 shots, 15 assists, 13 rebounds and 2 steals is epic. EPIC. EPIC.

Trying to describe the performance he put on in writing would be an insult to what he actually did, so I’ll pass on that. They literally don’t make words good enough.

Alternate Headlines

It’s Official- CP3 is the Point God.

*Yours here*

Trevor Ariza

Almost as much as Chris Paul, Trevor Ariza made his impact felt. In the first half he was balling like a zombie, playing 20 minutes, scoring 16 points on 12 shots, and really being the primary weapon. He scored nearly a third of the Hornets total points, and didn’t have a single turnover. Combine that with a defensive effort that left Kobe scoreless, and you have one hell of a performance.

Then the second half happened, and again led us to question who the real Trevor Ariza is. Dumb fouls, dumber jump shots which Monty dubbed “Hero Plays” (he said they didn’t need them), a defensive effort that saw Kobe go for 17, and missed shots. His late game D was much much better (probably because Kobe wasn’t at 100%), and he did snag five big rebounds in the half, but he was pressing so hard that he nearly broke the game.

Regardless, it was another positive performance by Ariza, who really played a big part in keeping the team in it early on. He’s the only guy on the team who can do so many of the things that he does every game, and tonight he showed yet again that he’s a playoff monster.

The Big Guys

The Hornets big men managed 20 second chance points while the Lakers had only four. Clap it up for your bigs. And for Monty Williams, who sent a letter to the league asking for explanations of why the Lakers bigs were getting to stay in the lane for more than three seconds, and why they weren’t being called when they commit fouls. Good questions! I was curious as well.

See? We have a coach who can play the media game, too. Phil Jackson isn’t the only one.

Guess who finally came to play? You guessed it- Emeka Okafor. For the first time all series he banged successfully with Bynum, and the result was a much more even matchup inside for the Hornets. They no longer had to send help each time Bynum touched the ball in the paint and that made it substantially easier to stop the Lakers from finding open cutters and shooters.

Since the ball was being worked from the outside instead of the inside, Okafor was also able to make his presence felt in the shot contesting and blocking department. The Lakers had a much harder time converting inside because the Hornets had their best defender back in action. He only grabbed a single board on the defensive end (he had five on the offensive side), but he was boxing out and controlling his mark. The Lakers had only nine offensive rebounds, after averaging 13.5 in the previous two games.

Aaron Gray had a nice performance in limited minutes, but it was one of those nightswhere every time he breathes he hears a whistle. That said, he played nice defense on Bynum when Okafor needed a breather, contributed on offense, and provided the Hornets with what we all knew they would need going in- A competent backup big man. He played 13 minutes, scoring 7 points on 3-3 shooting, to go with three boards and three fouls. Guess who’s going to get way overpaid this summer?

Landry was again a Laker-killer, somehow shutting down Pau offensively and keeping him off the boards on defense. Where he really made his mark though, again, was on the offensive side of the ball, where he again converted his easy looks inside, created when the need arose, and wound up with an efficient 16 on 11 shots. His 12 first half points were crucial in keeping the Hornets within striking distance. He was also a beast on the offensive glass, pulling down four offensive rebounds.

Even Mbenga got in on the action, playing five minutes and throwing a block in for good measure.

The Little Guys

Let’s ignore the first 47 minutes and 50 seconds (because who cares about those?) and focus on the last 10 ticks of the clock. Jarrett Jack, in what was arguably the biggest game of his life, hit a floater as the shot clock expired to extend the Hornets lead to 4, and then knocked down two clutch two free throws to do it again just seconds later. That sealed the deal.

Even with Jack scoring 5 in the last 10 seconds, the trio of guards combined for only 5-20 for 16 points, and 4 rebounds in 58 minutes. Yuck…

If Marco (32 minutes, 7 points on 11 shots, almost nothing else) had shown up, this one wouldn’t have been so close.

Game Notes

  • Movie of the fans reaction at the end
  • Ariza ripped on Chris Paul in the post game, saying he was “almost” six feet tall.
  • Paul led both teams in rebounds… by 4
  • One time the Lakers fans tried chanting MVP for Kobe, again. The Hornets faithful had none of that this time around, and quickly drowned out the Lakers fans with shouts of “Kobe You Suck!”
  • Bee Zanies were in great form tonight, leading chants around the Arena before the game and during halftime.
  • The crowd overall was great tonight. Paul talked about the fans and his love for New Orleans in the postgame press conference. Listen to that here.
  • Kobe rolled his ankle late in the fourth quarter.
  • Paul’s eye injury was the result of a Ron Artest elbow

Notes on the triple-double

  • It was the first ever against the Lakers in the playoffs (712 games) (Hollinger posted this earlier, but it doesn’t seem to be right. It looks like it’s the 6th in the past 20 years.
  • He joined Oscar Robertson (who did it twice) as the only players ever to record 25 points, 15 assists and 10 rebounds in a playoff game.
  • Since 1991, nobody has gone 27-15-13 in the playoffs.

Videos

This is the video Monty showed the guys to light a fire under them-

Apparently Chris Paul would hit his mom under the right circumstances. Good thing those won’t arise.

How Jack’s floater looked from inside the Arena-

And some highlights from the game-

71 comments
kempleton
kempleton

Just watched the battle of Kruger! Great choice by our Coach!!! Thumbs up! ARE YOU A BUFFALO? HELL YEAH! I AM PROUD TO BE ONE! LET'S KICK THOSE LIONS' $@%*& AGAIN!!!

Cloud520
Cloud520

Any chance we could get an upload of the intro videos for games 3 and 4?

cro_CP3
cro_CP3

We gotta, I know it's tough, but we gotta stay resilient and really try to do something fishy in LA, shock the world, for the third time, if CP3 is playing like this again, the sky is the limit, wow, it's paying off to be a Hornets fan, we've been trough really UPS and DOWNS, I'm a NOLA fan since 2004 and man what a road, if the guys give the effort like in game 4 and 1 (bench especially) and if they attack the paint and really it's going to be scary for LA, stay humble guys, because hey, the Lakers are the two time champs, but we got a hungry group with CP3, a premier, BEST point guard in the WORLD, houston didn't have that 2 years ago neither the Thunder, oh and another thing, DWest, get healthy and enjoy what the guys are doing, they are doing it for us and you too man...

nikkoewan
nikkoewan

just finished doing the paper i delayed because of this game. Many pundits still doubt us, that they think the games were lost merely because the Lakers were not playing to their potential rather than we won it by our grit, hustle and effort. To an extent it is true, but until when do you say that the Lakers are "coasting"? because I remember 2 years ago, when the series was tied 2-2, the Lakers were scrambling and many people were thinking the Rockets could actually win this series. Well, screw them! i REALLY REALLY REALLY HOPE we get to win game 5, and hopefully with a little help from the crowd, and my own voice back here in the Philippines, we eliminate them in game 6. We then get to challenge the mentally unstable Mavericks(after the ghost of playoff past appeared because of Roy's miracles) or the heavily injured Blazers(whom we beat a few months back). BEAT LA AND SHOW THE WORLD NEW ORLEANS IS A BASKETBALL CITY!!! SCREW THEM!! HURRAY US!! GO HORNETS! GO NOLA!!

kempleton
kempleton

Thank you Hornets! I lost my voice last night but it is well worth it!!! Come on Hornets, beat em again tomorrow! Lakers-OKC was 2-2 last year but Lakers won 4-2. We gotta play huge and if we can beat them again in Los Angeles, oh man! I hope we can do that but with these kind of refereeing, I don't know what kind of a game we will watch tomorrow. It is like the Lakers are untouchable on offense and the Hornets can be banged at any time with no call! Play inside early on, put Gasol or Bynum into foul trouble and then let CP3 take care of business. If we win tomorrow, we can eliminate the defending champs at the Hive on Thursday!!! I laugh with my ... to all those people saying "Lakers will Sweep Hornets" ! Beli and Green should play huge tomorrow for a win! Geaux Hornets! Geaux!!!

QueenBee
QueenBee

An hour look back of Game 4 is on NBA TV right now.

Mr.C
Mr.C

CP3 is one of the best point guards I've ever seen!!! He will go down as top 5 of all-time!!!

jgman
jgman

mbenga on a fast mbreak, HA classic

Mikey
Mikey

Great win. I'll be the 1st to admit I underestimated this team. last night, I saw a level of intensity and tenacity, the likes of which I didn't think was possible. I left the Arena dumbfounded at how hard these Hornets are playing. I'm so proud of this team, from Dell Demps on down. Make no mistake, the Hornets will need a big game from the SG position in order to take this thing. You can't rely on CP to do his "Jedi Master Yoda" impersonation every single night. Aaron Gray is playing himself off this roster. If he keeps this up, we won't be able to afford him in the offseason. Two of his 3 fouls were very smart fouls on Laker big guys. That's the way to use your fouls, don't allow layups to the opposing bigs, and make them earn their points at the stripe. Good on ya, Aaron. I took my cousin to the game, and we came up for a nickname for Aaron Gray. He's "The Ivory Panther". Chris Paul's post-game comments had me in tears.

mako
mako

They have left their hearts and lungs on the floor. The effort was there, aggression and fight. I felt the team spirit even here in Poland! Hope to see more of that! Hope to see the Hornets win the series!

Hordan
Hordan

3 crucial trends in the two games we won: 1) Chris Paul dominated like no other player could in the league 2) Bynum got into foul trouble 3) Gray put in some good minutes

Aussie Hornet
Aussie Hornet

Thanks for that audio Joe, CP3 sounds like the nicest dude on the plant.

nikkoewan
nikkoewan

from Patrick Ewing Jr.'s twitter account:(@pewingjr6) "Lets GO!!!!!!! Great win! I love my team! @Oneandonlycp3 killed it!" WOOHOO!!

Hornet Seantonio
Hornet Seantonio

I love Patty EW. dudes always jumping up and down, high fiving, slappin butts firing people up. Great teammate, great pick up

nikkoewan
nikkoewan

best quote of the night in the post game? Chris Paul saying that they will try to get game 5 so that they can close the series in game 6. GOD IT FEELS SO GOOD TO BE A HORNETS FAN AFTER ALL THE TURMOIL AND DOWNS OF THIS SEASON AND LAST. AWESOME AWESOME!! I literally shouted out in one of my class and my teacher was like "huh?" luckily, im friend with my teacher so he didn't do anything harsh :)) just went up to me and asked, whats up? and i was like, Hornets won, and he was like "Oh, Congrats" AWESOME! AWESOME! THANK YOU!! AWESOME!! UGH!! :))

cro_CP3
cro_CP3

I've watched the whole game as usual at 3:30 AM here in Croatia till 6:30 and it was a BLAST TO EVEN WATCH AT HOME ON A TV, I was cheering at that time, I will watch this game again and again and again and again, my God, what heart from our guys, CP3 is the point GOD... STAND UP & GET CRUNK, here we come to get you!!!!!!! GO NOLA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! LA here we come!!!!!

Bywas2001hornets4ever225
Bywas2001hornets4ever225

Great game! It was my first time going to a hornets game and they didnt disappoint. So I screamed my ass off, even tho da lakers were my first fav team, I heckled all of the lakeshow and participated in the kobe sucks chants. It was really fun tho.just wanted to say that belli kinda looked lost out there. Every time he missed a shot ppl around me started talkin about how much he suxked.. Felt kinda sorry for him. Awww... O well. Gray did good. I was goin hard behind him.

NolaHog
NolaHog

You know we're in the zone when: 1. DJ Mbenga finishes with a reverse layup on the fastbreak. 2. Willie Green literally breaks Kobe Bryant's ankles with a crossover. Also, Chris' comments here are great, but the best is Ariza's answer to the reporter's question. http://www.nba.com/playoffs/2011/westseries2/?ls=iref:nbahpt1 Do what cha wanna, Trevor! New Orleans!

Hornets188
Hornets188

CP3 is amazing, I love the way he plays. Period. This series would be over now if West didn't get hurt!

Hornet Seantonio
Hornet Seantonio

New ORLEAAAAAAAANSSSS! Also interesting lil nug I sat on the floor right by JUJU and if yall didnt know hes a Free Agent and hes looking to be a Hornet. Cool guy, talked a little bit.

504ever
504ever

JuJu could help our bench with his slashing style (that Monty supposedly wants in a wing) and he had a nice 3 point stroke in his rookie year. Remember? And he is very athletic. He would come cheap and likely not have much, if any, guaranteed salary. Why wouldn't we sign him? There is little to lose. Maybe he has learned to appreciate what he has here after being in basketball Siberia with 22-60 Toronto, and will work a little harder to be part of a playoff team????

CarnbY
CarnbY

I can't believe you guys would take JuJu back! Have you already forgotten how terrible he was? I'd much, MUCH, rather go with Quincy or Ewing.

NuNu318
NuNu318

JuJu is a good guy. Good teammate. I always thought he got the short end of the stick when Scott/Bowers were coaching. They didn't give him the playing time. I saw him play here in DC while he was with the Raps and in my eyes he still has some upside. Nothing wrond with giving him another chance. And I think Monty will put him in the rotation he seems like the type of role player that Monty will give some minutes to.

Hornet Seantonio
Hornet Seantonio

He said Tornto was a "good experience" but i guaged from him it seemed that its over and either they arent interested in picking him back up or vice versa but he def wouldnt be returning. He told me straight up he wants to be a Hornet. I think it made him feel good that everyone in the hive was walking up to him high fiving, at one point we all loved JuJu. Im not entirely sure he gives us anything that Patty Ew cant but i wouldnt be opposed to bringin him back. Belli hardly showed his worth in the trade last night.

Mark
Mark

Nice tickets! But I think we'll pass on JuJu. I mean, Hilton's a nice guy too, buuuuut...

Taquito
Taquito

I couldnt watch this, i wasnt home and boy am i upset about it, if anyone can find me a torrent link for this i would greatly appreciatte it. Watching the highlights though, its just unfair the way cp was toying with kobe and bynum with his handles and when he stole that ball from fisher while fish was trying to cross him over, hilarity, GEAUX HORNETS!

ktrufant
ktrufant

this should get you. http://bt.davka.info/ yeah, I think the steal on Fisher you're talking about is the one where Paul lost it on a bad pass or something, immediately runs back down the court to Fisher and, as Williams says, just rips his coat off.

CP3nBrees
CP3nBrees

1 huge key for us was that espn caught Kobe said "CP woke him up", that worked out perfectly for us, I can't remember for once lakers went post on Gasol or Bynum, and CP just single handedly took lakers' game plan out. Vintage Chris Paul.

Ian H.
Ian H.

Agreed! I was praying he would start forcing shots and start going "Kobe against the world" mode. He hit a couple tough shots but that's to be expected but Trevor locked him up and as u mentioned they stopped feeding the post. U rarely see superstars go at it like that, as a fan it's beautiful to see the most competitive guys in the league compete to that level.

nicks65
nicks65

Chris' best play is like great art. Tonight he controlled the game and its tempo like no one else I have ever seen that his size. Just dominant. Best player in this series and every game I feel like the gap grows.

Denny
Denny

Just for reference, this is going around Twitter, but literally NO player since 1991 (at least) has ever topped Cp3s playoff performance tonight, statistically. Truly historic. http://bkref.com/tiny/EZ8Jk

Ian H.
Ian H.

Great game, Trevor, Landry gave CP3 the support he needed in the 1st half unbelievable effort tonight. Willie Green almost made me lose it on that 2 on 1 break but his 3 was huge regardless of my feelings towards him

Monty'sDoghouse
Monty'sDoghouse

LOL don't get me started on that break. I actually blame Trevor. He has to know to pull that ball back. He's been there before. Doesn't matter though in the end.

hornetshornetshornets
hornetshornetshornets

Did CST show the game??? I was at the Arena but I want to watch the replay even if I have to stay up to 3 tonight

Chuck
Chuck

Alternate headlines: 1) Christ Paul arises on Easter Sunday 2) CP3 is better than you, and yes I'm talking to you Kobe 3) DJ Mbenga leads fast break, Hornets to victory

MaxALM
MaxALM

Christ Paul.

Nik
Nik

im voting for #3 he was the difference.. heh this works two ways ;)

MaxALM
MaxALM

It's great watching CP3 being C...P....3!!! Great win. Also, it would be nice if Marco can stop pulling a Mo Williams (choking).

Holy Cow
Holy Cow

What an amazing night at the Hive. Sitting with the Bee Zanies is a workout. I hope I don't have to talk too much at work tomorrow. Joe, might there be a Tuesday night watch party???

ThePurpleHornet
ThePurpleHornet

Glad to hear you had a great time! Thanks for being Zany with us for a few games! CRAAAAAAAAAZY atmosphere in the Arena last night. Exactly what I remembered in the 08 series. Game 3 just wasn't there and was sort of disappointed, but Game4 totally brought my faith back in the NOLA crowd. HOOP DAT! 2-2!

420ftjesus
420ftjesus

So says Mr. Bee-Fense cheer himself!

420ftjesus
420ftjesus

I was craning my ass over the railing looking for you, but I'm glad you got the zany hookup. Even if there's not an official watch party, there's nothing wrong with just meeting up.

Holy Cow
Holy Cow

I'm in! Pizza, beer and late night basketball.

Monty'sDoghouse
Monty'sDoghouse

Man you can tell these 8:30 games are hard on the crowd. What a win. CP3 just put every doubt about his caring to bed. His postgame interview was funny and he was having such a good time. Gotta give him a reason to stay. Everyone did their part tonight.

Monty'sDoghouse
Monty'sDoghouse

I'm not dissing the crowd by the way. They were pretty awesome. I'm just saying that every time something big happened, when the lull came, it was like getting a 2 ton car rolling again by pushing it. You know New Orleans is up to the task but it's still tough, especially having a ton of 30-60's there.

Trackbacks

  1. […] post: Chris Paul Has All Your Permission Slips, Hornets – http://www.hornets247.com The Hornets fall apart late and lost to the Lakers 100-86 in a game they desperately needed […]

  2. […] A good observation on the Hornets’ fabulous Game 4 win over the Lakers from Joe Gerrity of Hornets 24-7: Guess who finally came to play? You guessed it – Emeka Okafor. For the first time all […]

  3. […] (himself)”. It was an honest answer to a point-blank question. But it utterly downplays the herculean effort that Paul gave on court and begets, amongst others, this one question: how did we ever forget about […]