Announcement and a Game Preview

Published: April 1, 2008

After the dazzling ten thousand visits we received from our American Idol post, Ron and I decided to take a long look at what we're doing here at Hornets247.  We have come to a decision, and while we still love the Hornets and everything they stand for, we both realized we love lots of website traffic even more.

So I am here to announce that Hornets247 will be changing to PopCulture247 sometime this month.  No longer will we produce analysis for the Hornets, who seem to be doing just fine and will continue to do so without our contributions.  Instead, we will produce articles evaluating the strengths and weaknesses of various Pop Culture phenomenon.

I will be taking on Reality Television, including shows like American Idol, Survivor, Big Brother and The Real World.  I intend to delve into the life and times of Clay Aiken, get an interview with Survivor winner Richard Hatch, and produce daily reports on all the crazy events occuring in that Big Brother House.

Ron will handle the teenie-bopper market, producing insightful content about Hannah Montana, That's So Raven, and Drake & Josh.  He also will be producing some retro-articles about his personal favorite kids shows, Saved By the Bell and The Care Bears.


Hopefully, all of you will continue to read us as we move into uncharted territory, and we wish the Hornets all the success in the World.  We will still be watching.

One other thing before I do the Preview – I wanted to draw your attention to yet another great article, this one over at Hardwood Paroxysm about our Hornets.  It's nice the Hornet love is spreading.

Game Preview
Hornets(50-22) @ Magic(47-27)
Off Efficiency: Hornets 108.9(5th), Magic 108.9(5th)
Def Efficiency: Hornets 103.0(9th), Magic 103.3(10th)
Blogger: Third Quarter Collapse

Look at those efficiencies.  There are a lot about the Hornets and Magic that are similar, and it shows.  Both teams have stellar young talents that dominate their position and a pair of versatile forwards that can score like mad.  Both teams have defensive specialists at Shooting Guard, and both have shaky benches that can look great one night, and awful the next.

The Hornets have played the Magic once before this season, and they whalloped us 95-88.  Of course, Chris Paul didn't play and we shot an awful 4-17 from deep(told you 3-point shooting usually contributes to our downfall), but that's no excuse.  We got good bench production in that game and 18 and 7 from Pargo at the point and still lost.  This Orlando team is not one to take lightly.

Orlando has won seven of their last ten and have locked up that third seed in the east, barring them losing every game from here on out.  The Hornets have won eight of their last ten, and haven't locked up anything in the insane freakin' West.

Injuries:  Bonzi Wells was suffering from a tight back in Toronto, but is still expected to play.  Starting Magic Point Guard Jameer Nelson is injured and may or may not play.  I'll assume he does.  Backup Forward Brian Cook broke his finger and is out.

Positional Analysis
Jameer Nelson v Chris Paul
Advantage: Hornets
Nelson was once identified as one of the up and coming young point guards in the league.  Since a stellar 2005-2006, however, Nelson has tailed off every season to where he's now the fourth option on his team and only staying on the floor 28 minutes a game.  Jameer strength is his shooting, where he's strong from both mid-range and deep, but his penetration is limited and defense exploitable.  Paul is probably a bit better.  I think.

SG: Maurice Evans v Morris Peterson
Advantage: Magic
Maurice took the starting gig from Keith Bogans when he came over from the Lakers and hasn't let go of it since.  A solid energy guy, Evans has been taking advantage of all the double teams Howard draws by hitting career highs in shooting.  He also plays energetic, if not entirely savvy, defense.  I probably prefer Morris slightly on the defensive end, but Evan's scoring ability is better at this point.

SF: Hedo Turkoglu v Peja Stojakovic
Advantage: Even
In the last game, these guys went at each other, and there are a historical reasons for it.  Turkoglu got his start in Sacramento, and left when he couldn't get enough minutes.  Who was he behind?  Peja.  There is also a bit of a rivalry between the Serbian National team and the Turkish one, albiet one that goes entirely in the Serbs favor.  No wonder Turkoglu wants to go after Peja.  Turkoglu is having an amazing season, and does more on the floor now than Peja is called on to do right now, but Peja is a superior shooter and will hold his own.

PF: Rashard Lewis v El Fluffio
Advantage: Hornets
Rashard is a shooter, pure and simple.  The problem is he doesn't like contact much, and he'll be asked to guard David West.  West likes contact so he can shout "And One" as he doesn't get the call, so expect him to punish Lewis on the block.  expect Rashard to go out on the perimeter and shoot skillfully over the top.  Lots of scoring, but West's rebounding and post play is an advantage.

C: Dwight Howard v Tyson Chandler
Advantage: Magic
Dwight is a freak.  Tyson is usually more athletic than anyone he faces, but this time he's facing a guy faster, stronger, more skilled and only about an inch shorter.  Chandler is going to have his hands full against this guy.

Advantage: Even
Back up Point guard Carlos Arroyo is a slightly slower and less streaky Pargo, Bogans provides a nice backup defender and spot up shooter from the bench, and Adonal Foyle can foul people.  JJ Redick can sit on the bench and be proud of his basketball instructional video spots.  The Hornets have Bonzi, who is great, and Pargo and Julian, who again are up and down.  Pretty even.

Hornets win by 6.

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