Hornets Miss Gordon, Can’t Hang With Wolves Late

Published: January 13, 2012

The Hornets lost to the Timberwolves 87-80 after a disappointing finish that left fans asking when their closer, Eric Gordon, will be back.

Yeah, Thats how we feel

Minnesota Timberwolves 87 Final
Recap | Box Score
80 New Orleans Hornets
Chris Kaman, C 18 MIN | 0-10 FG | 2-2 FT | 9 REB | 0 AST | 2 PTS | -3Just couldn’t find his touch from inside or outside throughout the game. Grabbed boards and played decent defense early, but that was the only positive tonight. Didn’t even play in the fourth quarter. Only his first quarter play saves him from the F.
DaJuan Summers, F 27 MIN | 5-8 FG | 1-1 FT | 1 REB | 1 AST | 11 PTS | +3Had a great start, scoring the first five points of the game. He hit a huge jumper to put the Hornest within five about halfway through the fourth quarter. Offensively he was one of the few efficient options in the first three quarters. He played the entire fourth quarter until he fouled out with a minute 45 to, hitting a few key shots along the way. He’s clearly still a step or two behind in the grand scheme of defense, though. Regardless, it was a hell of a game for Summers, who made his first start as a Hornet and his second in the NBA.
Emeka Okafor, C 31 MIN | 8-14 FG | 0-3 FT | 14 REB | 0 AST | 16 PTS | -10The Hornets looked at Okafor early and often for scoring inside. He performed alright offensively, but he’s not a guy who should ever be one of the primary options. Tonight he was. The number overall were pretty solid, but it wasn’t efficent, his defense wasn’t very good, and he missed his free throws. Eh.
Jarrett Jack, PG 42 MIN | 3-8 FG | 2-4 FT | 5 REB | 9 AST | 8 PTS | -3Pretty invisible through three quarters. He started pressing in the fourth pretty unsuccessfully, and then successfully. He’s the leader out there and the Hornest need him to perform better throughout if they are going to close games strongly. He tried, but again was not able to play the savior.
Marco Belinelli, SG 36 MIN | 8-14 FG | 1-2 FT | 1 REB | 1 AST | 20 PTS | 0Found his shot tonight for a bit. Early on he was aggressively attacking, and then the middle came and he just sort of stopped being the aggressor and started waiting for stuff to happen. He got back with the program in the fourth and hit a couple big shots, including a three. What should have really mattered, though, was the three he hit with two mintues to go following an Ayon block. Crowd. Went. Wild. That should have been the turning point, but it just wasn’t…. Overall it was one of the best games of the season for him (not saying much), despite a few untimely fouls.
Carldell Johnson, G 13 MIN | 1-3 FG | 0-0 FT | 2 REB | 1 AST | 2 PTS | -8Lots of time despite being undersized on defense against everyone. Guarded Rubio for a bit. Hustled his butt off to get boards and on defense. It wasn’t a bad night, but he won’t be bragging to his friends after the game.
Jason Smith, PF 13 MIN | 3-10 FG | 0-0 FT | 3 REB | 1 AST | 6 PTS | -7Seemed to really take his matchup with Love seriously. He roared in anger after giving up a board on the defensive side that he should have grabbed. Monty is right– Smith is the leader of the second unit, and that’s a good thing because they really need someone to fill that role on the defensive end. His energy was great again, but he couldn’t hit his shot inside or out.
Carl Landry, PF 22 MIN | 1-8 FG | 1-1 FT | 6 REB | 2 AST | 3 PTS | +1Landry came alive a bit late, but overall he struggled against Love and Milicic. Had a very hard time getting his shot off and he wasn’t getting calls. When the nights are like this, Landry doesn’t bring much to the table since he’s undersized defensively.
Greivis Vasquez, PG 18 MIN | 1-6 FG | 0-0 FT | 3 REB | 0 AST | 3 PTS | -8Vazquez had a very quiet night. I honestly didn’t see too much from him on defense that I hated, but offensively he, like most of the Hornets, just didn’t have it.
Gustavo Ayon, PF 13 MIN | 3-5 FG | 1-3 FT | 4 REB | 0 AST | 7 PTS | +5Saw some time in relief of the struggling Kaman late in the third quarter and immediately had a nice offensive board and put-back. He followed that up with a nice steal early in the fourth and tried to Rubio Rubio! Fail. I like the steals though. That got him super excited, and he proceeded to commit a couple fouls that probably. His thunderous dunk and solid defensive play kept him on the floor ahead of Okafor and Kaman for almost the entire fourth quarter. He even played some sweet defense outside on Ridnour late in the fourth to contest a three, and then had a sick block that brought the crowd to their feet on the next possession which resulted in a huge Belli three. Color me super impressed, even if the behind the back dribble and the late three-second violation were less than stellar. He gets an A+ for that effort. Gustaaaaaaaaaaaaaavo Ayyyyyyyyyyyyyyyon, ladies and gentlemen.
Al-Farouq Aminu, SF 8 MIN | 1-4 FG | 0-0 FT | 3 REB | 2 AST | 2 PTS | -5Exremely quiet night for Aminu as well. Seemed to produce when he was in there, but getting lost on defense a few times will leave you riding the pine if Monty Williams is coaching. Summers playing great didn’t help his playing time at all.

Five Things We Saw

  1. I doubt they keep stats for these things, but I’m confident in saying that it would have been the first time this millennium a team had played an entire game without a visible tattoo if not for that damned DaJuan Summers. Oh well. His play made up for his ink being visible. (Not that tattoos are a bad thing! Just saying that if we wanted a tattoo-free game, he ruined it).
  2. As the Hornets trailed 70-69 with 5:00 to go in the fourth, Jarrett Jack was noticeably animated, yelling “One time!” in search of another stop on defense. Free throws ensued. Still, I like the leadership
  3. Kevin Love gets calls like Ricky Rubio would if his phone number were public. How many calls that went the wrong way was he a part of tonight? That was just absurd, especially at home. The officiating overall was less than stellar, and by that I mean awful. And by that I mean some of it was literally comical.
  4. One of these things has to be about the play of Ayon and Summers. Monty trusted both of them enough to play them as much of the fourth quarter as he could. Ayon is a unique defender for the Hornets as he can step outside and challenge guards without much fear of getting burned. Monty seems to really enjoy utilizing that skill. I was honestly shocked at how much freedom he had to roam late in the fourth.
  5. This was the most floss I’ve been to at the Hive so far this season. Not sure why, but I had a blast. Perhaps it was because I hit up the beer garden before the game with Mason, Jake, and Will from At The Hive, and got to sit next to the Hornets VP of Marketing for the second half. Good people. Good times.


Jason Smith

Marco Belinelli

DaJuan Summers

Carldell "Squeaky" Johnson

Marco Belinelli

Greivis Vasquez

Ricky Rubio

Greivis Vasquez defending Wesley Johnson

BeeFense swarming Rubio




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