Game On: Knicks @ Hornets

Published: December 3, 2010

Matchup: Knicks (10-9) @ Hornets (13-5)

Off Efficiency: Hornets 103.6(15th), Knicks 107.7 (6th)
Def Efficiency: Hornets 98.4(2nd), Knicks 105.9 (19th)

Thanks to the amazing Dariusz Ejkiewicz for the Game Day Banner.

The theme of the night will be conflicting styles, as the Knicks bring their fast paced offense (2nd fastest) to New Orleans (4th slowest). The Knicks come in having won their last five road games, and four in a row against New Orleans.

Even though the Knicks roster is almost entirely different every year, the team still scares me. Not in the same way that Michael is scared of OKC, but more in the way that I’m scared of termites. I know that if I just execute a proper strategy they won’t be a problem, but sometimes that just doesn’t happen, much like the Hornets sometimes just don’t show up against the Knicks.

For the Hornets to be successful they are going to have to control the tempo and play their half court game. Once in the half court they need to find a combination of players that can effectively check the the pick and roll. If they start trying to gun with the Knicks it’s could be a long night.

Raymond Felton and Amare’s execution on the pick and roll has progressed tremendously since training camp. It’s a huge part of why the team has been successful and why they will probably continue to be going forward. As we know, a great pick and roll is nearly impossible to stop. Felton to Amare is starting to look like something pretty fantastic, so keep an eye on that.

Here’s a sweet pick and roll-


Hornets: Pops (out- right elbow infection), David West (out- stomach virus)
Knicks: Azubuike (out- knee), Turiad (questionable- sore knee)

New Orleans Inactives:

Knicks Inactives:

Positional Analysis

PG: Chris Paul v Raymond Felton

Advantage: Hornets

Felton is having his best year ever, quite literally looking like a superstar. He’s been so good that he’s got Larry Brown pining for him over in Charlotte, and fans wondering why MJ let him go. His turnovers are up a bit, but that’s to be expected when transitioning to a fast paced offense.

SG: Marco Belinelli v Landry Fields
Advantage: Hornets

Everybody is all of a sudden in love with Landry Fields (EC Rookie of the Month), but I’m nto sold yet. I’ll take Marco’s defense and superior shooting until Landry proves me wrong. If Marco is on Landry defensively he needs to keep him off the glass.

SF: Trevor Ariza v Wilson Chandler
Advantage: Knicks

This should be an interesting match up, with Chandler having the advantage inside and Ariza outside. Both are good defenders so I wouldn’t think either will have much offensive output, but it should still be a fun battle to watch. All of a sudden it looks like Chandler has turned in to a shot blocker, so keep an eye on that to see if it’s real or just a result of a small sample size.

PF: David West v Danilo Gallinari
Advantage: Hornets

Two very different players should produce some interesting possessions on both ends. It’s not really clear who is going to be guarding who to start the game, but if West is on Gallinari he’s going to try to go inside, and on the other end Gallinari will spend most of his time on the perimeter. It’s possible West will switch over to Chandler at times leaving Gallinari to Ariza.

C: Emeka Okafor v Amare Stoudemire
Advantage: Knicks

Last year Amare abused the Hornets front court when he was with the Suns. Whie the Hornets defense is largely revamped, the advantage that Amare has over Okafor is pretty big. Look for the Knicks to go to Amare inside early and often, and for the Hornets to try and find a way to help Okafor once Amare catches it. One advantage Emeka does have is on the boards, so at the bare minimum he needs to win that battle.

Knicks: Tony Douglas, Roger Mason, Bill Douglas, Ronny Turiaf, Timofey Mozgov
Hornets: Jason Smith, Jarrett Jack, Willie Green, Marcus Thornton, Pondexter, Pops, Mbenga
Advantage: Hornets

Vegas Zone-

Points- Hornets are giving up 6.5 and bettors are split 50-50.

Money line- Hornets are -280. Knicks are +240.

Over/under- 204 with 85% taking the over. I like the under here.

Fuel for the Fire– Does anyone else remember when Chris Paul demanded a trade? I don’t, and find it pretty absurd that actual newspaper writers are reporting that he did. Cite your source, please. This guy, Ebeneezer, is a real scrooge-

But is Raymond Felton the point guard the Knicks really want? The 26-year-old may be reminded that he’s a mere consolation prize Friday night in New Orleans, when he goes head-to-head with Hornets guard Chris Paul.

Why? Because shortly after Donnie Walsh signed Felton in July, Paul demanded a trade from New Orleans, listing Broadway as a preferred destination.

Notes From the Arena (or maybe beforehand)-

Joe will be on ESPN’s Daily Dime Chat throughout the game, so come over and represent the Hornets fan base.

And check out for their coverage on tonight’s game.

42 says to Support the Team!


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