Hornets fight back from 21 down, fall just short

Published: November 14, 2012

That game felt a bit like a disaster for a time.  It’s hard to take a 39 point quarter and feel warm and fuzzy.  Yet I do, because these guys never lay down and die.  Vasquez, who laps up underdog moments like a Kardashian does attention, would not lay down and take it,  (unlike the aforementioned Kardashians) while Ryan Anderson did his best bulldog impression out there, fighting for boards as he accounted for six of the Hornets nine offensive rebounds.  Defensively the team showed grit in the second half.  It was good to watch.

Now, I’m not going to dwell on some of the lucky shots the Rockets hit, because the Hornets had their fair share as well.  Instead, I’ll absorb the fact the Rockets earned a Free Throw rate of .275 against the Hornets, nearly double what the Hornets had given up so far this season, recognize this will sometimes happen, and move on.

So let’s start with Vasquez’s game.  Faced by two Rockets guards who did not pressure his dribble at all, Vasquez looked like an all-star, getting into the paint and hitting big shots while still managing his normal passing excellence.  24 points, 9 assists, 5 rebounds, and two turnovers plus several huge shots in the fourth and a potential four point play that was waved off.  Grumble!


  • The Hornets put Aminu on Harden all game and he did a fine job despite Harden’s numbers.  The problem was Harden kept getting free on the pick and rolls as Aminu followed over and his first step was so quick the Hornets couldn’t cut him off to let Aminu recover.  Still, when Harden went Hero ball on four possessions, Aminu did hold him to two points from free throws.  Not bad.
  • Xavier Henry played fifteen minutes and was actually pretty good defensively.  It’s probably why he played – he could match up better with Parsons than Rivers.
  • Rivers had his best game, but with Aminu taking Harden he kept being matched up against the taller, stronger Chandler Parsons.  It got really ugly on the boards as Parsons just kept tossing him around.  Still Rivers is slowly figuring this thing out and actually hit a couple threes.   Give him a couple years he could be a solid guard in this league.
  • Both Rivers and Vasquez came up hobbling with ankle issues.
  • Roberts did his Pargo impression tonight, got momentarily hot, and got carried away by it.  I’d be fine if he did that if he could shed his terrible habit of stopping the ball.  Watch him closely on the perimeter on any possession.  If the ball swings his way he always catches it, holds it for just a second to see if he has a lane or a shot, and then moves it on to the next step.  That decision needs to be made as the catch is received.  Don’t wait!  Move it!  Rotating the ball is done to gain just a second of open space.  Don’t waste it.
  • Anthony Davis had a tough night.  Of course, 8 points, 4 rebounds, 1 assist, 2 steals and 3 blocks is a pretty nice bad night – especially with some of those blocks being amazing plays.  Davis was just being pushed around a lot and kept catching the ball near the three point line – outside of his attack range.  That’ll change as he puts on weight.
  • Have I ever mentioned how nice it would be if this team had just one more explosive scoring guard?

Next game is Friday against OKC in the Hive.


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