42 points on 29 shots by Ryan Anderson really caught my eye. Having Gordon really does help out everyone.
New Orleans Hornets 2012-13 Power Rankings – Week 9
The Hornets completed their first non-losing power rankings week since Week 1, finishing 2-2 with road victories over the Magic and Bobcats. The latter win came while welcoming back Eric Gordon to the court, as the Hornets’ star shooting guard instantly made his presence felt.
1) Ryan Anderson, PF – 31 GP, 32.6 MPG, 57.6 TS%, 16.7% DRR, 5.6% TOR, .153 WS/48, 20.3 PER; Last Week: 1
In the two games since Gordon’s return, Anderson has scored 42 points on just 29 shots, including an impressive 50% clip (8-16) from long range. As anticipated, Gordon has helped to free up Anderson on the perimeter, with defenses adjusting in an attempt to contain both players. This trend is one that should continue, and will make the games that much more fun to watch with the team’s top two scorers on the court together.
2) Robin Lopez, C – 31 GP, 26.5 MPG, 59.8 TS%, 10.9% ORR, 11.1% TOR, .147 WS/48, 21.2 PER; Last Week: 2
After reaching a level of scoring efficiency that previously had not been done since Deron Williams in the 2007-08 season, Lopez continued on to have a pretty solid week. Over his past four games, he contributed 56 points on 34 shots with 23 rebounds, 7 blocks, and 5 turnovers. It pains me to see Lopez out of the game in crunch time, because he is clearly one of the Hornets’ best five players right now; against teams without big scorers at the small forward position, I see no reason that he, Davis, and Anderson cannot play together at a high level.
3) Anthony Davis, PF – 18 GP, 32.2 MPG, 54.5 TS%, 22.1% DRR, 10.7% TOR, 0.124 WS/48, 20.1 PER; Last Week: 3
Apart from the home loss to Toronto, Davis has been fairly limited from a scoring perspective, but he is doing work in the paint. He has not totaled less than 9 rebounds in the past two weeks, and averaged over 11 rebounds and 3 blocks per 36 minutes over his past four games. You can see Davis progressing with each additional NBA game that he gets under his belt, which is one of the things that keeps this season entertaining for Hornets fans.
4) Greivis Vasquez, PG – 31 GP, 34.2 MPG, 49.9 TS%, 14.1% DRR, 34.1% AR, 13.3% TOR, .043 WS/48, 15.7 PER; Last Week: 4
While his placement within the power rankings remains unchanged, Vasquez moved a lot closer to the top 3 thanks to his strong performance over the past four games. The first three of those games earned him the honor of Western Conference Player of the Week, and he followed that award up with another good game last night. His per-game averages for the past four games include 20 points on 16 shots, 10 assists, 7 rebounds, and 4 turnovers in 41 minutes of action. It will be interesting to see how Vasquez’s game changes once Gordon is fully reintegrated into the offense.
5) Jason Smith, PF – 24 GP, 16.7 MPG, 50.0 TS%, 7.6% ORR, 12.7% TOR, .043 WS/48, 14.1 PER; Last Week: 5
Rough week for Smith upon returning from his torn labrum, as he saw his PER fall a full point. At this point, Jason is clearly the team’s fourth best big man (albeit one of the best fourth big men in the NBA), and he will have to remain extra focused in order to make a positive impact since his minutes will likely be more limited from here on out.
6) Brian Roberts, PG – 31 GP, 15.4 MPG, 49.9 TS%, 23.7% AR, 9.9% TOR, .044 WS/48, 14.7 PER; Last Week: 6
Like Smith, Roberts is going to have to adjust his mindset in order to remain effective despite a slash in minutes thanks to Gordon’s return, as his PER fell over a full point over the past week as well. He has played a total of 13 minutes in the two games since Gordon returned to action, taking just two shots in that time (missing both) and committing three turnovers. When playing 11 minutes or fewer in games this season, Roberts is 6-30 (1-6 from 3-point range) for a total of 15 points to go along with 9 assists, 6 rebounds and 8 turnovers, so it will be key for Roberts to learn how to stay effective despite the decreased playing time.
7) Lance Thomas, SF – 25 GP, 14.5 MPG, 50.3 TS%, 7.8% ORR, 5.8% TOR, .060 WS/48, 8.9 PER; Last Week: 7
Thomas’ PER experienced a sizable drop over the past 4 games largely due to his true shooting percentage falling nearly 4%. That being said, he is not a high-usage player and is more on the court for his energy and defense than for any offensive benefit, so PER is not a particularly good tool to evaluate his impact. He continues to play tough, physical defense against whoever he is assigned, and never tries to do too much on the offensive end. Most importantly, he gives the Hornets a more useful option at small forward than Aminu.
8) Eric Gordon, SG – 2 GP, 24.5 MPG, 46.2 TS%, 18.5% AR, 11.1% TOR, -.004 WS/48, 18.2 PER
Yes, I know that he has only played in two games, but his performance in his first game back (25 points on 13 shots with 7 assists, 2 steals, and a Hornets victory) was better than any single game that any player below him has played so far this season. Rivers’ 27 point effort against Minnesota is the only one that even compares, but he didn’t really impact that game in any way besides in the scoring column, and the Hornets lost the game. As a result, I feel totally comfortable moving him this high already.
9) Roger Mason Jr., SG – 29 GP, 19.7 MPG, 56.6 TS%, 13.0% DRR, 17.0% AR, 12.6% TOR, .042 WS/48, 9.5 PER; Last Week: 11
After turning the ball over just 16 times in his first 22 games, Mason has committed 8 turnovers in his past three games. Add that to his poor 3-point shooting over that stretch (1-9), and it’s pretty easy to see that it has been a rough week for Roger. Hopefully, Mason’s minutes are eliminated entirely upon Gordon’s return.
10) Al-Farouq Aminu, SF – 25 GP, 25.3 MPG, 50.3 TS%, 22.0% DRR, 13.4% AR, 17.0% TOR, .029 WS/48, 12.5 PER; Last Week: 8
With Darius Miller assigned to the D-league, Aminu has received a few minutes over the past week, but hardly enough to make any sort of real impact. At this point, he is merely being used to fill out the end of the rotation, and it looks like his days of getting heavy minutes as a Hornet are numbered.
11) Austin Rivers, SG – 30 GP, 27.7 MPG, 41.9 TS%, 20.4% AR, 11.3% TOR, -0.047 WS/48, 6.5 PER; Last Week: 9
Another sub-par week from Rivers, turning his 26 field goal attempts into just 18 points to go along with 10 assists and 5 turnovers. In the two games since Gordon’s return, Rivers has seen a giant reduction in minutes; his total minutes over those two games combined (29) is about what he was averaging in his first 28 games individually. Hopefully, Gordon taking some of the pressure off of Rivers to produce will enable him to become more efficient as the season progresses.
12) Xavier Henry, SG – 21 GP, 12.7 MPG, 47.8 TS%, 14.4% DRR, 11.1% TOR, .010 WS/48, 9.0 PER; Last Week: 10
After what appeared to be movement in the right direction for Henry in regards to his ability to play the 3, Henry received just 17 minutes over the past week, and most recently a DNP-CD against the Hawks.
13) Darius Miller, SF – 23 GP, 13.6 MPG, 49.90 TS%, 28.2% AR, 14.1% TOR, .029 WS/48, 6.0 PER; Last Week: 12
In an attempt to keep giving their second round draft pick minutes, the Hornets have assigned Miller to their D-League affiliate. More consistent playing time should help to make Miller more comfortable and assertive once he returns to New Orleans.
14) Dominic McGuire, SF – 8 GP, 16.1 MPG, 45.0 TS%, 18.5% DRR, 27.4% AR, 15.2% TOR, .031 WS/48, 8.0 PER; Last Week: 13
McGuire has a role that is very similar to that of Lance Thomas when he is in the game – make your man work every time he touches the ball on defense, be a facilitator on offense, and do enough overall to keep Aminu off of the floor.
All season long, these player power rankings will be presented alongside various “advanced stats” in order to more accurately evaluate each Hornets player’s impact (click here for a glossary of the statistic abbreviations). In addition, we also have created a chart with the goal of standardizing advanced stat categories to distinguish the good numbers from the bad ones. Hopefully, these tools give each of you the means to comprehend the advanced statistical metrics used in these rankings as well as other columns throughout Hornets247.com.
For historical power rankings, click here.
My thoughts on what Demps needs to do this offseason. Keep our draft pick, since it looks like it will be top 5 almost guaranteed. Sign Brandon Jennings to a deal around 11 mil per for 4 years, Corey Brewer for around 5 mil per year for 3 years, and hope no one matches either deal. Draft the best player available out of Noel, Zeller, or Muhammed cause I think we will have a top 3 pick for sure. Keep Lopez at his 5.1 mil and depending on who we draft sign Jason Smith or Aminu for around 4 mil per. Keep Greivis at his 2.1 mil per, Brian Roberts at his 788 K, and Darius Miller at his 788 K! I would try to sign two players both at the point and small forward. Maybe not exactly Jennings & Brewer, but two comparable to those salaries. Your lineup would consist of: C- Anthony Davis. - $5,375,760 PF- Ryan Anderson - $8,308,500 SF- Corey Brewer - ~$5,000,000 SG- Eric Gordon - $14,283,844 PG- Brandon Jennings - ~$11,000,000 C- Robin Lopez - $5,119,761 PF- Jason Smith - ~$4,000,000 SF- Shabazz Muhammed - ~$4,300,000 SG- Austin Rivers - $2,339,040 PG- Greivis Vasquez - $2,150,188 SF- Darius Miller - $788,872 PG- Brian Roberts - $788,872 Total cap = $63.4 million I would love this roster and think it would be a very dangerous team in a year or two. Now if we were to draft Noel or Zeller, I would drop Lopez and Brewer and sign someone better than Brewer at the small forward like Chandler Parsons maybe. I just hope we take an approach somewhat to this next offseason and keep that 1st round pick cause I think we would regret it. If Gordon stays healthy this season, a good free agent will want to come play with him, Davis, and Anderson! Especially a point guard the likes of Jennings, Lowery, or Teague. Unless Austin starts to show some real improvement and promise that he will be able to play the point next season, then I'd go the original route I was thinking and sign only Josh Smith close to the max to play small forward. Draft one of those bigs and roll with Vasquez one more year until Rivers is ready to take over full time as the starter.