Hornets lead in 4th again, lose again

Published: March 31, 2012

The woefully undermanned Hornets once again took on a superior foe – fought to the end, took a late lead, and then couldn’t hold on to win it.

New Orleans Hornets 85 FinalRecap | Box Score 88 Los Angeles Lakers

Lance Thomas, F 33 MIN | 3-8 FG | 0-0 FT | 7 REB | 1 AST | 6 PTS | -8Thomas routinely gave up 80-100 lbs to the Lakers front line, yet didn’t back down and did everything he could to slow the Lakers a little. No, he wasn’t very effective, but I’m not about to ding him for that.
Al-Farouq Aminu, SF 32 MIN | 5-11 FG | 0-0 FT | 7 REB | 1 AST | 10 PTS | +14Aminu continues to rebound well, defend well and not have an offensive identity. Expected results equates to an average grade.
Jason Smith, PF 37 MIN | 8-17 FG | 1-2 FT | 10 REB | 0 AST | 17 PTS | +4Jason Smith isn’t an efficient offensive player, but he is becoming more versatile and tougher. More than any other player on this Hornets team, Smith’s extended minutes this season has helped develop him into a better player.
Jarrett Jack, PG 33 MIN | 7-20 FG | 3-3 FT | 3 REB | 10 AST | 18 PTS | -12Jack is one of those guys that you want around to help carry your offense for the first three quarters like Parish or David West. Then, you need a superstar to finish things off. Nice game up until the end.
Marco Belinelli, SG 35 MIN | 3-12 FG | 1-2 FT | 3 REB | 3 AST | 8 PTS | -18Marco wasn’t taking shots he hasn’t made at a decent clip throughout the season, he just couldn’t hit them at all. I had no problem with it. However, I give him this grade because he was the primary option on that final play and he couldn’t find a way to get any seperation at all to receive the ball. He had three seperate screens set for him.
Chris Johnson, C 26 MIN | 3-7 FG | 0-0 FT | 8 REB | 1 AST | 6 PTS | 0His line isn’t bad, but Johnson killed the Hornets in the third. Bad fouls, bad rotations defensively, and general confusion on where he should be. I’m not going to thrash him with bad grades yet since he needs at least another week or two to settle in, but right now, he’s not looking that good.
Greivis Vasquez, PG 24 MIN | 6-11 FG | 0-1 FT | 4 REB | 3 AST | 12 PTS | -2Vasquez played a great game as a backup point. Too bad he couldn’t sink that wide open three at the end.
Xavier Henry, SG 20 MIN | 4-6 FG | 0-2 FT | 5 REB | 2 AST | 8 PTS | +7Henry was solid. His attacking instincts remain superb. His free throw shooting remains a real problem that is completely inexplicable.

Three Things We Saw

  1. Bynum and Gasol should have destroyed the Hornets front line. In fact, if Kobe hadn’t been putting up airballs through the first half, they probably would have. I mean – faced with Jason Smith, Aminu and Lance Thomas, how is it that Bynum had 3 shots at half time? 3 shots?
  2. Jack’s statline explains why the Laker’s announcers lavished so much love on him. Inefficient guards really get them excited. Kobe was terrible all game long – and if he’d managed to hit ONE of his first eighteen shots, they wouldn’t have needed that last second three from him. Which, by the way, was a bad shot too.
  3. You know, I’m fine now that the Hornets lost. Big picture and all. Still, when watching the game, I always want the Lakers to lose sooo badly.
  4. I missed it. Anyone know why Landry didn’t play?


  1. Michael McNamara

    March 31, 2012 at 5:32 pm

    If I had to draw up the ideal script for how I would want this game to play out, I don’t think I would have dreamt up anything better than reality. You lead most of the game, Aminu and Henry get some nice minutes for the future, Kobe has one of the worst games of his life, we lose by a narrow margin (keeping us in the race for #2), and Kobe hits the last shot so he can still keep his delusions of grandeur- which will haunt them in the playoffs.


  2. da ThRONe

    March 31, 2012 at 5:41 pm

    I really wanted this one! Proud of the fight my team showed. Man if Jack would have made the layup or if “the General” would have hit that wiiiiiiiide open 3. Oh well wearing my Hornets Tee all day in L.A. and wish somebody would say something. LOL.

  3. RBee

    March 31, 2012 at 5:50 pm

    Really proud of them for fighting so hard. I wish we had some other play to run with less than 20 seconds left. Seems like we’ve done this same Jack hold it out front then go to the basket and hope for the best every game. As I recall, it’s only worked once this year. But, given all the injuries and going up against the Lakers in LA – great game! PS – I think they said Landry sprained his ankle.

  4. clef504

    March 31, 2012 at 6:01 pm

    First props to Ryan…….he’s the greatest.

    Watched the game and noticed one thing…..I feel the hornets should keep Chris Johnson long term. Good teams develop players instead of constantly rotating for new ones or 10 day contracts. I know he probably won’t be in heavy rotation next year, but if he puts on weight, continue to hit that short jumper and hussle, he can be a factor. He reminds me of Brandon Bass, a player that took years before he became a factor in the leage. I think the hornets strength will always be our depth cause “superstars” are attracted to a real city like New Orleans so we have to be good in depth and rotations. Maybe I’m taking a long shot but I think he has a chance in 2 to 3 years that we should hold on to.

    Other than that good game hornets. We should draft MKG and a PG, not sure which one but a PG of the future. Keep Landry, develop Ayon and we will be fine……but that’s only if we don’t get the 1st pick…..DAVIS!!!!

    • NOH Domination

      April 1, 2012 at 10:35 pm

      I will cry myself to sleep for a week if we draft MKG.

  5. Ryan

    March 31, 2012 at 6:08 pm

    landry was out due to a sprain ankle he got in the portland game

  6. Ryan

    March 31, 2012 at 6:14 pm

    i would have given aminu a B- for today just cause the 2 head shots he took and a busted lip and going be a bruised hip after the fall he took

  7. Pluto D

    March 31, 2012 at 6:16 pm

    Not that grades really matter, but Aminu should have a higher grade imo. 4 steals and the highest +/- of anyone in the game at +14.

    Yall keep saying how important the offseason will be for Aminu’s development. I completely agree. Which is why you can’t hate on the guy for not making ‘the jump’ offensively from game to game. You know what you’re getting offensively from Aminu at this point, and anything more is a bonus. Let the offseason be the judge of his improvement.

  8. made you look

    March 31, 2012 at 6:52 pm

    I think its funny reading a post praising a loss and comments about delusion.

  9. ImSorryMonty

    March 31, 2012 at 9:46 pm

    I really think Xavier is gonna be a pretty damn good player. Aminu is playing with alot more confidence too.

  10. NOS-3rd Gen

    April 1, 2012 at 12:13 am

    I wish they start landry more. I know he wasn’t able to play tonight, but I know landry can average 16 ppg, but when he was playing Monty barely started him. It looks like he’s doing the same thing he did to Marcus Thornton now to Landry. before I jump to conclusions and state like Monty Williams is driving scoring players away, (which is bad for business, and what i think he is!) Can someone explain to me what’s Monty williams deal with all of this????!!!!!!!

  11. Mike P

    April 1, 2012 at 12:48 am

    On defense, Landry gets absolutely abused by bigger post presences that can score. He’s a good backup big, but nothing more (which I suppose you can say about a lot of our frontcourt).

  12. Calabrone Viola

    April 1, 2012 at 2:19 am

    I’m angry today, for the unpteenth time another hoax. This lost are ridicolous, in the worst season of Hornets history, without all 5 original starting lineup, New Orleans have lost 10 points of advantage in the last quarter against this Bryant & Lakers.. Ok, good effort for the team, only 8 players on the court, but is another L. This is a really big gift for the final stupid fanshow in L.A. I don’t understand why Jack was against Bryant in the last possession. And i don’t understand, if is true, the decision from new owner to kill 24 years of Hornets history (10 in New Orleans).. No sense.. I hope to watch New Orleans Hornets better days.

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