Hornets sting Magic, snap nine-game losing streak
by, 01-28-2012 at 12:22 PM (391 Views)
Well since Iíve been away a while Iíve got some explaining to do.
I love blogging and really wish I could do it more, but its getting to the point where I have a few exams and Iím preparing for them a lot of the time. That doesnít mean I will stop blogging for you wonderful people on this wonderful site, just expect to see my productivity down a little.
Anyway, excuses over, lets assess last nightís action.
Going in to the game on the back of 9 straight losses, itís fair to say that the Hornets were on a little bit of a downward slide. However that means nothing when your team wants it more, a fact I will refer to later, which the Hornets obviously did last night.
First things first, you just have to look at the result to share the same surprised expression as I do. It may seem a little negative, but I donít think any of us to win this game, let alone blow out an above-average opposition in the Magic.
Now, I managed to watch the game last night and the team that I watched didnít even resemble that of which I have seen fail so miserably not too long ago. I liked a lot of aspects of the performance last night; I liked the desire, the energy, the commitment, the co-operation, the relentlessness. You get the picture. And this coming from a team who had lost 9 in a row. Enough said.
On the statistical side of things, the fact that a bench player (Carl Landry) was the leading scorer (17 points) suggests a little bit more than you might think at first. I donít think it directly equates to depth, however I feel that it is crucial that we get some contribution from these sorts of players. He made 8-13 from the field, had 4 offensive boards, a steal, a block and an assist. A pretty nicely rounded performance.
Although Carl Landry was fantastic, I think itís fair to say the best Hornet on the court was Jarrett Jack. He had 11 points, 5 boards, 9 assists and 2 steals. Again, not a bad performance but we need to see more. Jack has taken on a leading role which is nice, and although I am not his biggest admirer I have always wanted to see him take more of a command on the game. With CP3 gone and Gordon out, it was his perfect opportunity and he embraced it.
After the Hornets had won (and I mean won) the game, it was interesting to hear what
the players of both sides had to say. Starting with Dwight.
"I look at guys and they don't look like they want to play,"
"I told them at halftime, `If you don't want to play, just stay in the locker room, because it don't make sense for a team who we should beat to just demolish us."
"It hurts to get out there and you play your hardest and you expect everybody to play the same way, If you don't want to play, stay home. People work too hard. I want to win a championship. I work too hard every night for anybody to not want to go out there and play hard. ...Ē
Harsh words. I know I took a lot of quotes but that was one hell of an interview. Dwight blasted the entire team for what was an awful performance yet again. I know if youíre Dwight it must hurt and I totally understand where he is coming from, but I donít understand how he can talk about his team-mates not wanting to play because he has already said he wants out of Orlando. How much of a de-motivator is that?
Howard had 28 points and 16 rebounds, but was the only player in double figures in any statistic for the Magic, who continued to slump after blowing a 27-point lead to Boston a night earlier. Starting with the third quarter against the Celtics, the Magic have now gone six straight quarters without scoring 20 points in any of them.
Coach Williams had this to say on the win:
"Any time you hold team like that to 67 points, you get excited about the fight and character of our team," Hornets coach Monty Williams said. "I hope our fans understand this transition hasn't been easy. We have a ways to go ... but when I'm in that locker room, in those huddles and the guys are supporting one another, out there fighting for each other, the way they played tonight, it makes the prospects for the future of our organization look bright."
Speaking of the future, what about Kaman? Told to stay home while the team tries to shop him. What if they canít? The way I look at it he doesnít have much trade value other than enough to get us maybe a first rounder if weíre lucky. What if we donít even get that? We have basically said that we donít want him. How will that make him feel? How does that make us look?
Anyway, rant over, I am thoroughly glad to finally see a win and I am genuinely sure that come the end of the season, that wonít have been our last.