Bobcats Top Grizzlies On Snow Day


The Charlotte Bobcats defeated the Memphis Grizzlies 95-82 at the Cable Box on Monday night to improve to 5-2 under coach Paul Silas and 14-21 overall.  Stephen Jackson led the way with 27 points (11-23 FG, 3-7 3PT, 2-2 FT), 6 rebounds, 4 assists and 4 steals as the Bobcats continued to play without injured starters Gerald Wallace and Nazr Mohammed.

AP Recap |  Box Score

Beyond the continued renaissance of the Bobcats under Paul Silas (albeit against marginal competition) and the general listlessness of the Grizzlies (how have they won 17 games?) the other big story was the weather.

Charlotte was hit with six inches of snow Monday, which is more than enough to shut this city down.  As the snow transitioned to sleet and then rain this afternoon, I decided to venture out to the game.  Not many others did.

The Bobcats pulled the curtains on the upper deck and invited everyone down to the lower bowl.  I settled into some sweet club seats along with about 1000 other fans.  It’s always takes me about a quarter to adjust to the view whenever I don’t sit in my regular seats — tonight it was doubly weird with the curtains drawn on the upper deck and the sparseness of the crowd.

But a good time was had by all.  The crowd seemed to appreciate the extraordinary nature of the proceedings and cheered extra loudly.  The hecklers had a field day (primary targets: Zach Randolph and Boris Diaw).  And the Bobcats complied by taking care of business on their home court much like they did during last year’s run to the playoffs.


  • A quick look at the East standings after the game provides a (weak) argument for not blowing the team up/rebuilding.  With the win, the Bobcats are percentage points out of the 8th playoff spot and only 1 game back in the loss column from the 7th spot.
  • Quintessential Boris Diaw night: 40 minutes, 6 points (3-6 FG, 0-2 3PT), 9 boards, 4 assists, 1 steal, 1 block, 4 turnovers, great defense on Zach Randolph, and several moments of superficially lackadaisical play that had some fans pulling their hair out.
  • Tyrus Thomas fouled out in 17 super-aggressive minutes — got a big hand when he left because of the 4 blocks he had.  Speaking of, can you imagine if you could give Boris some of Ty’s athleticism?  Or give Ty some of Boris’s savvy/pace/control?  Can we combine them?  Scientists?
  • Next game is Wednesday night at the Cable Box against the Bulls, who are 25-12 overall, but only 8-9 on the road.

Zach Randolph for Radmanovic and Mohammed?


Randolph for Radmanovic and Mohammed?

So you’re Rod Higgins and Larry Brown.  You just found out that the Grizzlies tried to take Zach Randolph off of the Clippers’ hands by offering them Darko’s expiring deal and Greg Buckner – only to have Clips owner Donald Sterling turn them down.  You look over at each other and think:

“Sterling must feel like an idiot right now.  He could have cleared up cap space AND opened up the four for Blake Griffin all in one deal and he turned it down.  He’s probably desperate now.  Are you thinking what I’m thinking?  Radman and Nazr really aren’t in our long term plans and they don’t really fit the Larry Brown profile…hmm.  But Z-Bo is a nut-job and he plays less defense than Kurt Warner.  Dude can really score though…hmmm….”

Let us lend virtual Rod and virtual Larry a hand at making this decision.  Y’know, Benjamin Franklin was one of our wisest men and before he would make any major decision, he would take out a sheet of paper and…well, you know the rest.

So let’s break this down Benjamin Franklin style!


Radman and Nazr make a combined total of $12.9 mil in ’09-’10.  Randolph makes $16 mil.  The Bobcats would have to swallow the additional $3 million out of their remaining cap space.
In ’10-’11 Radman and Nazr are owed a total of $13.77 mil while Randolph is owed $17.3, a difference of $3.6 mil.  All three contracts expire at the end of the ’10-’11 season.

UPDATE: Bonnell just reported on the ‘Cats salary situation heading into free agency.  To make the the Randolph trade work, the ‘Cats would have to use their trade exception from the JRICH trade and bundle in Ajinca to make this work.

DECISION: Is Randolph worth an extra $3+ million per season?  Is one big contract easier to trade than two smaller ones?

ANALYSIS: Randolph will play over thirty minutes a night and score 18-20 points while doing it.  Vlad will be lucky to see eighteen a night and Nazr will serve his usual role as tackling dummy.  If the experiment doesn’t work, the ‘Cats have a major expiring salary to deal next season.

Zach Randolph starts...


Here’s where it gets tricky.  The Bobcats already have a starting PF and he’s damn good.  After last December’s trade with Phoenix, Boris Diaw partied like it was 2005.  The question is whether or not Boris could make the move from effective starter to equally effective 6th man playing the same amount of minutes subbing at both forward spots.  Diaw didn’t respond well to it when Amare returned to the lineup in Phoenix so it is a major risk with this move.

The Randolph/Diaw combo would make for an incredible composite:
Diaw, a point-forward who is an underrated defender and selfless to a fault and Randolph, a black-hole low-post scoring machine who prefers to play hard only when his team has the ball.

DECISION: Is Randolph’s low-post scoring enough to offset his notorious lack of effort on defense?  Would Boris remain as effective as the team’s 6th man?

ANALYSIS: Productivity is a non-issue here.  Randolph gives the team a serious low-post scoring threat for the first time in franchise history.  Playing alongside Emeka would cut Zach a little more slack on D as well.  The issue is chemistry.  Could Boris make a smooth transition to the 6th man role?

...and Boris is the Sixth Man


Could Larry Brown really tolerate a guy who hates playing defense as much as he likes “simulated sex shows?”  Well, LB did put up with Iverson for a while.  The bigger question is whether Charlotte could put up with Randolph.  The city spent the past four years taking out their collective NBAnger on Sean May and he was a Boy Scout compared to #50.
I can only imagine how many Tom Sorenson columns we’d see comparing Zach to Derrick Coleman (and the Eldridge Recasner incident).

DECISION: Is Charlotte Ready for Zach Randolph?



POLL : Trade Mohammed & Radmanovich for Zach Randolph?

  • Make the Deal - Get Randolph (37%, 18 Votes)
  • No Deal – Zach doesn't fit the team (53%, 26 Votes)
  • No Deal - Charlotte won't welcome Zach (10%, 5 Votes)

Total Voters: 49

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