Blazers Use Depth to Hammer Bobcats 7-Man Rotation


Bobcats Baseline Observations: Charlotte @ Portland 2/1/10

No running diary tonight as I’m furiously preparing and packing for a trip to Western Australia (or “WA” as the locals call it).

Bobcats end a three game road winning streak against the Blazers at the Rose Garden 98-79.  AP recap here.  Box score here.

Simple Arithmetic

When you commit 21 turnovers on the road while launching a barrage of errant three pointers (6-23 for 26%) and allow your opponent to drop 53% shooting on you WITHOUT their best player AND their two centers, you are going to lose.  Bad.

The Bobcats (mostly) seven man rotation looked tired against a deep Portland team, settling for long jump shots and lazy passes.  Boris Diaw was a major culprit in the TO department, logging 5 while maintaining his “Laissez Faire” status.  Stephen Jackson and Flip Murray shot a combined 4-13 from behind the arc.  Ouch.

While it’s amazing that Portland can still trot out 9 quality players while missing three of their top 8 talents to injury (Brandon Roy, Greg Oden, Joel Pryzbilla), it’s perhaps more astonishing that Larry Brown insists on going with an EXTRA-abbreviated bench five games into a six game West Coast road trip.  The ‘Cats looked tired and uninterested for most of the game outside of a nice 10-0 rally late in the third.  Let’s hope that they were just saving their legs for another Lakers upset Wednesday night in LA.


  • For those of you hoping for a D.J. Augustin Renaissance, don’t hold your breath.  D.J. continues to turn the tables on an excellent rookie campaign.  17 minutes, 0-5 (0-4 from three), 2 assists, 1 turnover, -9 plus/minus.  I hope his Junior Rebound is as dramatic as his Sophomore Slump.
  • The Portland crowd is one of the top 3 in the League without a doubt.  It sounded like a Playoff game in there tonight.  Can’t help but believe the Bobcats players felt a little jealous hearing and seeing this.  C’mon Charlotte!  Let’s re-create the Hive!
  • The Blazers Nic Batum and Martell Webster, two players who have been mentioned in Bobcats trade rumors for years, played great tonight, torching the ‘Cats D from the outside for a combined 25 points.  The ‘Cats have never had one of those long, silky smooth jump shooters.  Wonder how long that will last?  Rod Higgidy-Higgins?  Anybody?
  • Not to keep ripping on D.J. but aside from Brook Lopez (I won’t go there again), we can now easily make the case that the team should have drafted Jerryd Bayless instead.  Bayless seems to be everything that Augustin isn’t: explosive scoring mini-2-guard who can drive and shoot.  At 6’3″, 200 Bayless is bigger than Augustin and much less of a defensive liability.  Seriously, Michael Jordan should bring in a specialist DRAFT DAY GM.  Isiah Thomas is out there somewhere in rehab.  Let’s do this!

Until next time…Enjoy the Loss Bobcats Fans…


Charlotte Bobcats vs. Blazers 1/17/09



Bobcats vs. Blazers 1/18/09

Bobcats win their third straight over the Portland Trailblazers Saturday night 102-97 in OT to notch their 3rd straight victory and improve to 16-24.  Can you smell .500!!!???  AP recap here.  Box score here.

1. Gerald Wallace.  Words can’t describe what GForce did to Greg Oden on a monstrous alley-oop.  See for yourselves:

Wallace’s 31pts (on 10-19) with 16 boards (!) and two BIG time blocks set the tone for the rest of the team and had the Bobcats playing to win from the very beginning.  This was one of those nights when you remember how good Gerald is and how much the team relies upon him for creating offense in the lane.  The dude is so fast when he’s on the break and just goes to basket and is willing to take the hit.  Statistically, GFORCE may not be having his best season (yet) but as an all around ball player, he’s really been evolving to another level.  Maybe that benching against the Wiz last week was exactly the prescription he needed.

2. Okafor.  Huge game from ‘Mek tonight.  22pts, 11rbs and thoroughly dominated Greg Oden.  Oak’s block on Brandon Roy late in the game prevented the Blazers from getting anything going.  Emeka has been playing great all year but don’t take our word for it.  From Raja Bell post-game:

“Emeka is a really good player. Sometimes a different look can help a guy like him when guys don’t necessarily want to leave us (defensively) on the perimeter and he’s going to be able to work one-on-one with guys in the post. That’s all you can ask for as an offensive player is to get a one-on-one opportunity, and I’m happy to be able to do that for Mek. He’s great when my man comes to help – he finds me on the perimeter and then it’s up to me to make shots. It’s been a pleasure playing with him.”

3. Trust us Raja, the pleasure is all ours.  Bell completely shut down Brandon Roy in the first half (2pts) and pestered him late on a couple of drives that prevented Roy from every getting anything going.  And while Boris Diaw struggled seriously with his shot (2-9) he tied with Felton for the team lead in assists with 7 and hit a absolutely huge 3pt basket late in the 4th to end the Blazers push.  Speaking of Raymond, another nice game for Sir Trade Bait as he showed some major cajones down the stretch, hitting an off-balance 12 foot bank from the top of the key to put the ‘Cats up and then had a nice dribble drive shot opportunity (the one’s I usually hate) in OT that was good enough for Okafor to tap back out for an offensive board.

4. The Bench.  Although Adam Morrison looked completely lost (as usual) coming in to rest Wallace, the ‘Cats can breath a sigh of relief at the completely surprising efforts of one Juwan Howard.  Who knew that this guy still had something in the tank???  He added 8pts (4-5 shooting) and some serious veteran stability in the 13 minutes he played and is all of a sudden making Brown/Jordan/Higgins look like Joe Dumars or Geoff Petrie.  Nice work from Juwan.  Unfortunately not all was great from the bench.  Nazr Mohammed should be nicknamed “BuzzKill” for his incessant lack of effort/energy.  The guy just isn’t a Brown-type player and I very much foresee Felton being moved before the deadline for, if anything, to package with Nazr and get him off of the books.  What a waste.

5. Great home win for the Bobcats and with Spurs coming to town on Monday for MLK Day, why not make it Four in a Row with new big man DeSagna Diop showing up just in time to help shut-down Tim Duncan.

Enjoy the win, ‘Cats fans.