Game On: Hornets @ Clippers

The last time these two teams got together, a three-point contest broke out in the middle of an NBA game, and thanks to Ryan Anderson and Greivis Vasquez, the Hornets pulled out a thrilling victory. Can it happen again? Well, let’s take a look at how the Hornets can win this game.

Keys to the Game

1. Crash the Offensive Glass

Aminu and Ryan Anderson did a good job of this in the first meeting, and now the Hornets have their top offensive rebounder in  Anthony Davis back after missing the previous matchup. The Clippers allow opponents to rebound nearly 29% of their misses, which is in the bottom five in the NBA. The Hornets were on fire in the last meeting (shooting nearly 51), so there weren’t a ton of boards to be grabbed. It is highly likely that they  shoot a lower percentage this game, and if they do, they need to makeup for it on the glass.

2. Limit Turnovers

This is where the Clippers separate themselves from the pack. Not only do they do a tremendous job of forcing turnovers (1st in the league in steals, total turnovers, and TO%), but they are among the best at converting in transition. They average 1.22 points per possession in transition, which is 5th in the league. About 17% of their makes in transition are ‘And 1’s’ or three pointers, providing a potentially huge 5-point swing in their favor when they turn you over and run.

3. Isolation Works

This Clippers team is solid on defense across the board with one exception- they are terrible defending iso plays. They give up .9 point per possession against isolation plays, which is 26th in the NBA. The main culprits are Chris Paul and Jamal Crawford. When they are put in space, they allow the opponent to shoot over 50% from the field and give up over 1.1 points per possession. Bledsoe, Barnes, and Butler all have exceptional numbers in this area, but Paul and Crawford can be exploited. The Clippers get a lot of their steals by jumping passing lanes. One way to remedy that is to put Vasquez, Roberts, or Rivers in an iso situation against a poor iso defender and either take the shot or make the simple kick out when defenders come to help.

Enjoy the game and check back here for updates as we will alert you to any changes in the starting lineup and whether or not Eric Gordon is spotted at the game.



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