Just got back from Staples Center and a great Hornets victory! Only had two Bud Lights because I sensed we could take this one mid way through the third and I wanted to be fully conscious of what was happening. Observations: Ryan Anderson is a bad man. Austin Rivers played well, but got a little too AND 1 MIXTAPE after he started to get hot and it didn't help our cause. I could see the bizarre facial gestures he sometimes makes when he's about to do a crossover, but a great performance overall by AR.
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Game On: Hornets @ Clippers
The Hornets head to LA to face an old friend
Keys to the Game
1. Find Ways to Deal with the Pressure
The Clippers are first in the league in steals and second in the NBA in defensive turnover rate. CP3 figures to lead the league again in steals, but his apprentice Eric Bledsoe is just as good at creating turnovers. Paul is averaging 2.8 steals per 36 minutes, while Bledsoe is averaging 2.7. Matt Barnes, Jamal Crawford, and Blake Griffin all average over a steal a game, and when these guys get a steal, they get the ball to CP3 who always makes you pay in transition.
2. Attack the Offensive Glass
The Clippers are 24th in the league in defensive rebound percentage, primarily because DeAndre Jordan only gets 27 minutes per game and when he is off the floor, teams eat the Clippers alive on the boards. When they go small and play Griffin at the five or when they sub Ryan Hollins in, Jason Smith, Ryan Anderson, and Robin Lopez have to make them pay.
3. Attack the Rim
The Hornets play a perimeter game offensively, but that is going to have to change tonight if they have any chance of pulling this one out. You have to make the Clippers pay for gambling and for going small, and the way you do that is by attacking and getting to the line. The Clippers have yielded the 5th most free throw attempts in the league this season, as Ryan Hollins, Lamar Odom, and DeAndre Jordan have been fouling machines. Take it inside on those guys and get as many trips to the line as you can.
Other News and Notes
– Will he or won’t he? That is the question today as we all wait to see if Eric Gordon comes out to support his team. Gordon is in LA right now rehabbing his knee and it would be nice to see the guy on the bench, supporting his teammates and the organization that gave him $58 million. The Indiana Hoosiers are off tonight, so I see no reason for Gordon to miss this game.
– No Anthony Davis again tonight and Eric Gordon is still out of course. For the Clippers, they are still without Chauncey Billups, who could come back any day now, and Grant Hill.
– If Anthony Davis comes back soon and Ryan Anderson moves back to the bench, then his main competition for Sixth Man of the Year will likely be Jamal Crawford, who is just lighting it up right now. 18.6 PPG, a PER of 20, and a true shooting percentage of 62%. Anderson, meanwhile, is putting up 17.8, 21.2, and 61% in those categories.
– Finally, we have Jason Smith coming on for our 100th podcast, which we will put out later this week. If you have any questions for the fan favorite, list them below.
I loved seeing gordon on the sideline getting pumped! Rivers was amazing and vasquez dominated cp3. Seriously we NEEDED this win and the boys delivered. But honestly, the best part of the night was seeing gordon on the sideline truly invested in the team. I feel so warm and fuzzy right now. Maybe it's the xanax. Lol
Not only was this a great win, it was against the Clippers. It seems like the players want to beat them as much as I want them to.
Great win for the team. NOLA needed badly to win, to create a winning atmosfere. These kids need confidence and play fearless. Have fun guys, enjoy the game...
It's a miracle!!!!! I just watched Anthony Davis and......(drumroll)....Eric Gordon help up Ryan Anderson. This is the best game ever!!!!
I say put Rivers at 1 Vasquez at 2. GV can knock down the three whenever his feet is set and Rivers is giving it to him in his sweet spot.
I like Vasquez at the PG he is very clever but have a lot of pressure on his back while trying to establish himself as a starter an elite player. NOLA player are either rookies or first year starters (Except EG), I feel this causes a lot of stress to them. Need a lot of couching
You cannot tell me that Austin Rivers shouldn't start at point. He is showing excellent signs in finding players. I expect him to make mistakes but he is still doing wonderful distributing the ball
Hopefully Miller gets the same opportunity that he got the other night, I was thoroughly impressed with his rebounding defending and he did a great job of passing. Would like to see him be more assertive and challenge Aminu as well Henry for more playing time. Geaux Hornets!!!
How long is Davis projected to be out? It's been about a month on gordon, how much longer until he comes back and fakes another injury?
For JSmith: From a fan's perspective it is obvious that Smith is someone that has improved and added to his game each year. For instance, this year he is attacking the rim off the dribble rather effectively. Is it really the case that players work on their game, well besides Jamal Crawford, or are the abilities there but lay dormant for whatever reason(comfort level, system, teammates, etc..?) Oh and my apologies as a year or so ago in this same forum I said JSmith shouldn't be anywhere near a NBA roster. He made me eat my words BIG time.
That's ok. Our perceptions of players can change. It's good that you noticed J. Smith's improvement. You are right, he's been attacking the rim more often and that's very unusual -- a 7 footer attacking the rim. There are obvoously holes in his game. He's not much of a presence on the defensive glass and if his outside shot isn't falling, he can take the team out of its rhythm, but he also has plenty of upside. It's unusual for a 7 footer to have good outside touch, an ability to put the ball on the floor and attack the bakset AND be a shotblocking and offensive rebounding threat. I actually felt that Smith would be one of our best players this year before we signed Anderson. But now, obviously limits and touches become a bit more limited. Still, we're getiting good value for $2.5mill thius year from Smith. Cheers.
I'll be at the game tonight. Hopefully, we hang in there long enough for me to get at least 3 bud lights in me so I'm numb to the final score. If I can make it to the arena early enough, I'll try to take a pic of Eric Gordon flirting with Penny Marshall.