Hornets Fall in Overtime to the Raptors After a Late Rally

Published: December 28, 2012

It was a furious finish, but ultimately the Hornets fell 104-97 in overtime to the Raptors. Until about the last 5 minutes or so this was a very ho-hum game that featured interesting moments and highlights but lacked excitement. And then the Hornets started hitting clutch shots late and rallied from 11 down to tie it on an Anderson 3-pointer with 8 seconds left. Some people will say this was a confidence inspiring performance. Other will say it’s a deflating loss. Based on how the Hornets play tomorrow night against the Bobcats, we might find out which.


-The Hornets backcourt really had a tough time fighting through screens in the pick and roll tonight. In no small part due to the massive size of Aaron Gray. But it really hurt the Hornets tonight and allowed the guards to penetrate off the dribble.

-Not so fast, Damian Lillard. Anthony Davis still wants you to know he is in the running for rookie of the year. Despite two early fouls, Davis had another complete game. Davis really showed off his mid-range game–which is both a good and bad thing. I like that he has that in his arsenal, but I’d rather have him attack the rim. Davis chose a long two over driving on multiple possessions tonight–even though he had a good angle to attack. He certainly has the handles to drive and and I’d have liked to see that aggressiveness tonight.

Davis also played with great intensity during the Hornets rally. You have to love seeing that out of a rookie. If he plays with that intensity all the time, Davis will be an all-star sooner rather than later.

-A lot will be made over Vasquez’ near triple-double but he had an average game overall. His rebounds were largely inflated due to the fact that his height allowed him to grab many of the Raptors’ missed 3’s. I’ll certainly take his rebounds but it’s not like he was banging in the paint trying to grab boards. And then there were the turnovers. 6. I want to like Vasquez so much. I really, really do. But for every good play he makes, and there are times when he makes many, he does something to hurt the team. And it drives me crazy.

All that said, Vasquez looked great when driving to the rim on offense. A lot that was due to Monty’s masterful substitutions. Vasquez can handle Calderon on both offense and defense. And he did just that. But when Kyle Lowry was in Vasquez struggled. Lowry was just too quick for Vasquez on both sides of the floor. But Monty did his best to limit the potential damage and anytime Calderon was subbed out, so was Vasquez. It’s no shock that when Vasquez played great in crunch-time it was against Calderon. In overtime there were back to back possessions where Vasquez tried to take Lowry off the dribble. It resulted in two empty possessions. But late in the 4th quarter there a period where Vasquez went freaky clutch.

-Lopez cooled off offensively from his recent handful of games. He did a solid job on the boards in the first half but disappeared a bit in the 2nd. If he wants to maintain that consistent level of scoring he needs to develop another move than his little hook shot.

-The Hornets’ perimeter defense was much improved tonight. Part of that is the Raptors are not a good three point shooting team and don’t have a strong inside presence, but it was nice to see that most of the 24 3-pointers the Raptors took were contested tonight. And I’m glad the Hornets strategy was to not quadruple team Gray.

-The Hornets are now 0-17 when trailing after 3 quarters.

-Toronto’s bench massively outperformed the Hornets’ with a 49-31 advantage. Guys like Alan Anderson and Amir Johnson contributed while the Hornets got very little from Smith, Henry, McGuire and Aminu. The only two bench players who had an impact were Roberts and Anderson. The Hornets will hopefully get a bump in this area tomorrow with the return of Eric Gordon, but they are still far away fro being a deep team.

-I’ll be honest, I didn’t pay much attention to Austin Rivers tonight. I liked his aggressiveness when a bigman switched onto him. Fill me in with your thoughts in the comments below.

-I’m just going to quote this tweet from our own Michael McNamara: “Hornets quartet of SF’s tonight: 49 minutes played, 3 points, 6 rebs, 3 assists, 8 fouls.”

-In his post game press conference Monty had a good observation saying that there wasn’t a particular stretch which hurt them but that the Hornets hurt themselves throughout the night with their 17 turnovers which Toronto turned into 23 points.

-Monty also said, in regards to his rotations, that he is “just trying to find guys who can play minutes.” It seems like he is still experimenting his roster but he also noted that he might be playing too many people right now.

Let us hear your thoughts in the comments and hopefully the Hornets can rebound from this loss tomorrow night against the Bobcats.

Ryan Anderson Lance Thomas Austin Rivers Greivis Vasquez Bench Anthony Davis Austin Rivers Anthony Davis Greivis Vasquez Austin Rivers


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