Hornets take down streaking New York, win 3rd Straight

Published: February 17, 2012
New Orleans Hornets 89 Final
Recap | Box Score
85 New York Knicks

Trevor Ariza, SF 45 MIN | 10-20 FG | 1-1 FT | 8 REB | 1 AST | 25 PTS | +8

Ariza capped off a brilliant opening stanza with solid, steady contributions throughout the rest of the game. He was dead set and determined to have this game tonight, and turned in a beautiful game.

Gustavo Ayon, PF 29 MIN | 6-9 FG | 1-4 FT | 11 REB | 2 AST | 13 PTS | +7

Gustavo has the highest basketball IQ on this team. Outside of Chris Paul, he may have the highest Basketball IQ a Hornets player has had in a decade. Ayon is brilliant at finding space in the opponents defense, great at working the baseline side to side to get open, and cuts hard to the basket at the right time, all the time. His defense was also very, very good against Stoudemire, who spent most of the first half crying about not getting calls against Ayon after getting them every two seconds when Solomon Jones or Lance Thomas was on the floor.

Chris Kaman, C 37 MIN | 3-12 FG | 6-6 FT | 8 REB | 6 AST | 12 PTS | +14

Normally, I’d kill Kaman for his offensive efficiency and the fact that no big man should be dribbling one step away from the basket and then taking a jumpshot. However, he was instrumental to the Hornets clogging the paint against the Knicks penetration, and jammed the roll man on the pick and roll the way the Hornets needed him to.

Marco Belinelli, SG 35 MIN | 7-14 FG | 2-2 FT | 1 REB | 1 AST | 17 PTS | 0

Belinelli had a nice game. Over the last five, he’s provided consistent scoring, and if he’d done this all season long, he’d be in line for a nice raise next year.

Greivis Vasquez, PG 32 MIN | 4-9 FG | 5-6 FT | 1 REB | 11 AST | 15 PTS | +10

Vasquez was slicing the Knicks defense apart, except for when Jared Jeffries was guarding him. He couldn’t get past the long-armed Knick, but it didn’t matter because D’Antoni kindly pulled Jared out and let the Hornets offense start up again. Schumpert could have given Vasquez more trouble if he hadn’t been so over-eager out there. He kept getting himself in trouble trying to press Vasquez, who calmly took the openings given to him.

Jarrett Jack, PG 21 MIN | 1-6 FG | 2-2 FT | 4 REB | 1 AST | 4 PTS | -12

Jack had a rough first game back. His shot was off, and his decision making was poor as he tried to force the issue.

Solomon Jones, C 4 MIN | 0-0 FG | 0-0 FT | 2 REB | 0 AST | 0 PTS | -6

4 turnovers and 2 fouls in 4 minutes of gametime. Wow.

Lance Thomas, F 8 MIN | 1-3 FG | 0-0 FT | 1 REB | 0 AST | 2 PTS | -4

I feel bad for Lance Thomas. He gives everything he has every minute he is out there, but he’s just too undersized. When he was trying and failing to guard Amare Stoudemire, it reminded me of a Jack Russell Terrier harassing a Doberman. Thomas was leaping all over, and Amare was simply shrugging him off and doing his thing.

Al-Farouq Aminu, SF 17 MIN | 0-1 FG | 1-2 FT | 1 REB | 1 AST | 1 PTS | -1


Five Things We Saw

  1. The Hornets packed the paint all game long, and the Knicks wouldn’t have even been close if the Hornets hadn’t struggled keeping Chandler and Stoudemire off the offensive boards.
  2. One more thing about Ayon and my man-crush on him. He knows how to defend driving guards without fouling. I may have to make a video about him.
  3. When Jeremy Lin missed that three near the end after Ariza flashed out hard at him, there was a timeout, and you could see the Knicks bench in the background. While everyone else looked a bit bummed out, Carmelo was smiling like a fool. I bet someone in the prolific New York media will be running with that shortly.
  4. I didn’t mention Xavier Henry up above. It’s because I really have nothing to say about him. So far he’s like off-white paint. You notice it if someone points it out, otherwise, you ignore it.
  5. 3-0 week. I wish I could feel more excited about it. But I can’t. Can you?


  1. JayRey

    February 17, 2012 at 10:36 pm

    Woot Woot!!! WE beat Linsanity! I knew the Hornets coming into this game had a good chance of breaking the Knicks’ streak and Ayon was a big X-factor with his hustle and mental prowess. Great game by the Hornets.

  2. J

    February 17, 2012 at 10:38 pm

    What a feeling to get this win to beat the Knicks Geaux Hornets!!

  3. StefanC

    February 17, 2012 at 10:41 pm

    You have a man-crush on Ayon too? We shall fight for him!

    • Ryan Schwan

      February 17, 2012 at 11:23 pm

      You will lose. I know eight spanish words.

      • nikkoewan

        February 17, 2012 at 11:49 pm

        both of you will lose i took spanish during my 4th year!!

      • Solesfan

        February 18, 2012 at 12:58 am

        I’ll beat everybody spanish is my first language.

      • Taquito

        February 18, 2012 at 3:27 pm

        yo he estado apoyando a Ayon desde el principio! you all lose!

  4. nolahog

    February 17, 2012 at 10:55 pm

    Well, I said I was going to talk about this after we won this game (see my final comments from the Hornets/Bucks wrap-up), so let’s begin.

    I don’t think we should trade Kaman. What are we going to get for him other than a late round pick and inferior players? Yes, I know his contract expires after this year, but I’d like to keep him for the rest of the year. People, like me, who have shelled out big bucks for season tickets, don’t want to watch the team tank. Especially since we’re not guaranteed the first round pick if we have the worst record. I’d rather enjoy the rest of the season and watch a few more wins than pick up some other slightly above average forward or guard that would take minutes away from Ayon or Vasquez. These guys are starting to jell, and when Gordon ultimately returns, we’ll have a damn good team. There’s a reason people really want Kaman. . . HE HAS AN EXPIRING CONTRACT. That means he’s just as valuable to us as he is to other teams. We’re still going to have a lot of money coming off the books this offseason. If I thought we could get an excellent building block in return for Kaman, then I’d say trade him, but otherwise. . . a late round 1st round draft pick is just too much of a crap shoot for me to place too much value on.
    Trevor, as I predicted, was money. I’m in awe of this guy’s endurance. He still is running and diving and grabbing at balls after playing basically THE ENTIRE game. He’s an animal, and with Monty’s philosophy, he is a must have player on this team.
    Finally, Vasquez was F#@KING MONEY. Jack is the best scorer on the team, but Vasquez is by far the best passer. Some SICK passes out there tonight.

    P.S. Ayon is the man-child. “Pone el equipo encima su espalda, doh!” (at least I think that’s right, from my college Spanish).

    • 504ever

      February 18, 2012 at 1:26 pm

      What if we traded Kaman and Jack for a quality (Houston’s or Detroit’s, for example) starting PG, expiring contracts, and some young players?


    February 17, 2012 at 10:58 pm

    Great job of coaching by Monty Williams & his Staff! Great game plan on defending the pick-n-roll.

    -Let’s not lose that #2 slot in the draft guys-

  6. C.C.

    February 17, 2012 at 11:00 pm

    Awesome game. Pretty much everyone played great. I especially loved the way Greivis played; he was freakishly efficient. I gotta admit though, even though I’m excited about the 3 game win streak, I can’t help but feel kinda disappointed as well, knowing that my dream of us getting Anthony Davis slips further and further away with each win. But oh well, I’m not gonna complain about a “W.” Great game guys. Geaux Hornets!

  7. George

    February 17, 2012 at 11:16 pm

    Do you think it is worth trying to make a run at Raymond Felton, he is struggling in Portland and seems to be unhappy with Nate. If we draft Davis, Robinson or Sullinger he is a great pick and roll partner

    • Everett

      February 18, 2012 at 10:10 am

      Not a bad idea, but if we got him this year, we might move out of the top 4 picks. Plus you wouldn’t think Portland would let him go cuz they got no solid backup for Felton.

      • 504ever

        February 18, 2012 at 1:31 pm

        Also, Felton isn’t a shooter, and we need perimeter shooters. Remember, he is a $7.5 expiring contract. No guarantees he would resign here.

    • NOH Domination

      February 18, 2012 at 1:59 pm

      If he doesn’t like Nate he probably won’t like Monty…

  8. David

    February 17, 2012 at 11:19 pm

    kaman has to be traded. It makes no sense to hold on to him this year and watch him walk away at the end of the season for nothing. Even if it is a late first round pick that’s more valuable than Squadoosh after the season. Unless, of course, they decide to re-sign him, which I seriously doubt Kaman re-signs to be a backup for less money when he is a top 15-20 center in the NBA.

  9. Richard

    February 17, 2012 at 11:20 pm

    This blog’s writers should stop the whole “Greivis can’t be a starter in this league” BS and just let the kid play and respect his game because he is giving it his all out there. He’s an excellent passer and has a very high IQ. Not many teams have that and, believe me, a few playoff teams are dying to have a pass-first PG (like the Knicks a few weeks ago). Sure, he doesn’t have the speed to defend fast PGs but that’s when you make match up adjustments as a coach and figure it out, just like the Knicks today who threw THREE different defenders at Greivis (and he managed to still be effective and have a double double). Stop hating and enjoy! Happy for the win! Keep it up!

  10. Gaiking

    February 17, 2012 at 11:40 pm

    We shouldn’t be winning. These meaningless games should all be losses, I bet we will be on the same position we find ourselves each time the regular season comes to an end; scrambling desperately for a standings position. This time unlike the others we will be ahead of Charlotte and I dare to say other teams. We are so bad we even suck at tanking.

    Players developing and gathering experience is fine as long as it doesn’t interfere with the long term plans which very much involves acquiring as many losses as we possibly can. I find myself in an odd situation that I never wish I did, I am rooting for the team to lose and I am getting absolutely frustrated to see them even win one freaking game when it is absolutely clear we need to lose.

  11. Hoc

    February 17, 2012 at 11:48 pm

    Umm dont knock Henry. Very solid d tonight. And that block on chandler???

    • C.C.

      February 18, 2012 at 2:50 pm

      front page of the TP today 🙂

      • C.C.

        February 18, 2012 at 2:51 pm

        sports section, that is

  12. Jo D

    February 17, 2012 at 11:52 pm

    Vazquez left Lin “Greiving” 😉

    • C.C.

      February 18, 2012 at 12:16 pm

      *Puts on sunglasses* YYYYYEEEEEEEAAAAHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!

  13. nolahog

    February 17, 2012 at 11:55 pm

    Oh, and I loved Trevor’s fake behind the back pass to open the lane for the layup. That guy is ridiculous!

    Playoffs, baby!!!

  14. Lucas Ottoni

    February 18, 2012 at 12:09 am

    Greivis Vasquez indoctrinated Jeremy Lin in the third quarter. Lin scored 26 points, but Greivis distributed more than twice as many assists and had three times less TO. I think therein lies the key to our victory.

    Another great performance from Goose. I confess that overthrow the “Linsanity” in the middle of Madison Square Garden was too good. This was worth the whole season.

    • Everett

      February 18, 2012 at 9:50 am

      Hell yeah, he left Linsanity stranded on Greivis Island.

  15. Hornetsky

    February 18, 2012 at 12:13 am

    I dont mind ppl here all want a high draft pick which means we should suck all season and lose games after games after games. But close wins like this especially when were shorthanded shows that the team wants to win night in night out. We’ve always been competitive all season and now that guys are jelling and beginning to learn how to close out games, i guess we’ll
    hopes of landing a high pick.

    • Richard

      February 18, 2012 at 12:47 am

      We’ll still get a high pick. I might be the only person in the world who thinks both Harrison Barnes and Jared Sullinger are the best players in this draft. At least I think Barnes will have the best career out of those guys in the top 5…

      • Lucas Ottoni

        February 18, 2012 at 6:03 am

        I totally agree. Harrison Barnes would be my pick. The guy is a beast, a gunner. He will be an NBA All-Star.

      • nikkoewan

        February 18, 2012 at 7:36 am

        My draft board is different
        1.) Davis
        2.) Robinson
        3.) Drummond
        4.) Sullinger
        5.) Barnes
        6.) Michael Kidd Gilchrist

      • 504ever

        February 18, 2012 at 1:35 pm

        Sullinger over Barnes any day!

        And take Drummond out of nikkoewan’s draft board and you have my draft board.

  16. Nick Malone aka yankeesman77

    February 18, 2012 at 12:31 am

    As one of the only Hornets fans in the building tonight with my lovely girlfriend. We even sat next to a New Orleans gal who cheered for the Hornets also in our same row in section 326. I’d like to take full credit for the win, rooting for the Hornets the entire way and loving thesigh and depression set in inside the Garden with each clanking shot from Steve Novak and Landry Fields. I think I see another Lin turnover.


    Getting to see your favorite team win inside the enemys building. Priceless.

    Win of the year by far.

    Also, Goose’s driving layin and one in the 4th to give the Hornets the 5 point edge at 76-71 late in the game was the real knife in the Knicks fans hearts.

    I want to see more Trevor Ariza taking shots which is the exact opposite of how I felt compared to last year when he took shots. He just looks so confident out there now as a team leader. It’s rediculosu yest so fun.

    I am so very fortunate and I love this Hornets team.

    I hate the Knicks with every fiber in my being and seeing this victory tonight made it all that much sweeter.

    Representing Long Island, NY. Hornets nation, Tonight’s victory was awesome.

    Nick Malone

    • nolahog

      February 18, 2012 at 2:13 am

      Linsanity is no match for Mardi Gras.

  17. David

    February 18, 2012 at 1:35 am

    Vasquez and Ayon will be anchors for our 2nd unit for a long time. He shouldn’t be a starter, but will be a big part of our team moving forward

  18. D$

    February 18, 2012 at 3:17 am

    ariza is the man…i know he can take stupid shots but he is one of the best defenders in the nba plus he can pass,rebound and sometimes shoot..but we need him on this team even if in rebuilding so no more trade ariza talk we can win a ship’ with him as a starting sf…the lakers did

  19. Calabrone Viola

    February 18, 2012 at 6:35 am

    NYK search Linsanity, but find Belinsanity.. What a shot! Great victory, the Hornets eat the Big Apple. Thank you guys!

  20. J

    February 18, 2012 at 7:36 am

    We made Jeremy out of Lin-guine friday night lol.Geaux Hornets

  21. Holy Cow

    February 18, 2012 at 7:48 am

    I love the win, however, I don’t really want to see a 10 game win streak. I can take comfort in seeing the young nucleus of the future play well and come up short. Ayon continues to impress with his hustle, his offensive awareness and his ability to put the ball on the floor and take it to the hoop. Vasquez has been impressive and he continues to improve with extended playing time. We know what we have in JJ. Let’s get an extensive look at Vasquez so we know what his role will be in the future.

    In response to Nolahog, I appreciate Kaman’s contributions to the team, his attitude and hustle. However, he is not going to be a Hornet next year, so we need to get something for him and the better he plays the bigger our return will be. I agree with a post from earlier this week in that we don’t need to be in any rush to trade Kaman. Let him continue to play well and let the bidders come knocking on our door.

    I really hope that Trevor is not a guy that gets traded at the deadline. We need his defensive skills to play defense the way Monty wants to do it. He’s not going to provide this kind of offensive production consistently, however, he has the ability to get hot occassionally. I’ll take it.

  22. Nithenz

    February 18, 2012 at 8:18 am

    Love to beat the Knicks…Im like Nick, i hate the knicks with all my heart, lol. Great to take the seson series =P

  23. Nithenz

    February 18, 2012 at 8:25 am

    For some reason i remembered yesterday Houston 22 games W streak…. I have lotto fever as any Hornets fan, but i thought… what about making history winning when anybody expected us to win…win…win big…win a lot… I have missed just 2 games all season (no live stream to Mil game and one earlier this season) and every game i think we have a chance to win… Ok, stop dreaming, OKC will be a tough game…

    Ariza is a keeper, players with that heart going to the floor for loose balls and cutting lanes are a must on every team, and i hope he is with us for the long run.

  24. scooter

    February 18, 2012 at 9:39 am


  25. Everett

    February 18, 2012 at 10:01 am

    Anyone else wonder why Sloan didn’t see any time in the game? He could have helped out on the floor when they trapped Greivis, or they should have put him at PG and slid JJ to the 2 on that 2nd unit. But Monty doesn’t hesitate to play the clearly overmatched Lance Thomas? I don’t get it. If D’Antoni were as conservative as Monty, there’d be no such thing as Linsanity.

  26. da ThRONe

    February 18, 2012 at 10:20 am

    I don’t mind a few wins as I rather not draft Davis which were almost certain to do with the first overall pick.

    • C.C.

      February 18, 2012 at 2:38 pm

      Why not draft him? He’s the best OVERALL basketball player in the draft. Sure, Barnes is a better shooter, Sullinger has better post moves, Robinson is a better rebounder, but Davis is the complete package: He plays great 1-on-1 D, great shot-blocker, he’s very athletic, runs the floor well, good passer for his size, he’s developing a mid-range game, he doesn’t turn the ball over, and he’s not very foul-prone. His only deficiency is weight (only 220 lbs) but weight will come in time, after all, he’s only 19. By the time he’s 23 years old, he should be up to about 240 lbs or so. IMO the Hornets need good, all-around players like Davis, not one-dimensional players like Barnes or Sullinger. I understand your skepticism of Davis, but he’s far and away the best prospect in this draft.

  27. NOH Domination

    February 18, 2012 at 2:03 pm

    I like winning and everything, but 3 in a row?! C’mon! Anthony Davis!

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