« Weaver trade a surprise | Main | Marketing officer's release fits Bobcats pattern »

August 16, 2008

Playoffs? Lottery may be more likely for Bobcats

Okafor200p There's impact, and then there's IMPACT. I think Larry Brown will make the Bobcats better next season, maybe winning five games they wouldn't have otherwise won.

Doesn't mean I think they'll reach the playoffs.       

I think it will be harder - perhaps significantly harder - to make the playoffs in the Eastern Conference than it was the past two seasons. Injuries could diminish some top teams (think Miami's precipitous fall last season), but the way other teams are improving will make it tough on the Bobcats, who (at least so far) haven't done much to change their look.

Again, barring major injury, I think seven teams are virtual locks in the East. As of now, I'd rank them: Boston, Cleveland, Orlando, Philadelphia, Detroit, Toronto and Washington.

That would leave the Bobcats vying for the last spot with at least four other teams: Milwaukee, Atlanta, Chicago and Miami.

I think Richard Jefferson will greatly improve the Bucks and the Bulls and Heat added the top two players in the 2008 draft. The Hawks will miss Josh Childress, so they could slide.

The Bobcats haven't done much to upgrade beyond hiring Brown. They locked up Emeka Okafor (a wise move, but that retains, not improves). They added some depth at point guard with rookie D.J. Augustin. And if Jason Richardson plays the way he did the second half of last season, the Bobcats will have their first All-Star.

However, until they add a versatile, athletic big man to complement Okafor, looks like they're treading water and pointed back toward the draft lottery.

Posted by Observer Sports on August 16, 2008 at 10:05 AM | Permalink

Comments

I think that anyone who is a fanof the Bobcats know that we need to add that versatile big man to get to that next level. We just wonder if the Front Office knows this. Oh well, I guess we can start looking the 09 NBA draft.

Posted by: Steve | Aug 16, 2008 10:54:06 AM

They had a chance to add a big man and instead they drafted some seven foot tall pastry chef. BRILLIANT!!!!!

This is what happens when the man in charge of "basketball decisions" is more worried about tee times and strip clubs. Sorry Charlotte, you deserved better.

Posted by: TP | Aug 16, 2008 11:55:40 AM

For real, when is this team going to move to another city ?

Posted by: Good grief | Aug 16, 2008 1:31:12 PM

Yeah and the bobcats have the highest lower bowl ticket prices in the entire NBA. AMAZING!! They need to adjust the prices down enough to sell out the arena and then start raising them when they create an atmosphere. Simple economics. Why in the world would someone pay $150 for a ticket when you are the only one at the game and you can get the same ticket from scalpers for $25?

Posted by: Bob | Aug 16, 2008 2:14:01 PM

Well said Rick. We have been begging for an impact starting PF to put beside Okafor for the last 2 seasons. As we come up on season 3 what do we have? Another year of "maybe Sean May..." when he's never proven an ability to stay healthy or be a force even when healthy, a second year hard worker in Davidson (improving but not nearly ready to contribute major minutes) and Ajinca, a man who, I will say kindly, needs a LOT of work in the NBDL. That's it. So what is the front office doing? Evidently nothing. They could have signed Josh Powell as a young player to compete for the role but the Lakers finally signed him. They've got too few assets to make a deal for a starting PF without giving up Wallace (if anyone wants him). So where does that leave us? STUCK IN NEUTRAL, just as Bonnell said.

I'm not sure the Bobcats can afford that. By making stupid draft picks we are left only slightly better than last season while other teams have stepped up in a big way. DJ will be a good player, but there were TONS of free agent PG's available that could have filled in behind Felton. Had we chosen Lopez, we would have had a big man to place beside Okafor from day 1. Or if we had chosen Bayless we could have moved Wallace in a trade for a PF (Al Harrington?), played J-Rich at the 3 and Bayless at the 2. That would be a heck of a team once everyone was up to speed.

DO SOMETHING BOOBCATS. WE WANT YOU TO SUCCEED BUT YOU'VE GOT TO STEP UP AND GET A STARTING PF!!

Posted by: Truth 1 front office 0 | Aug 16, 2008 3:05:11 PM

I took a client from out of town to a game last year and he said his city gets a better turnout for WNBA games. Then I told him I paid $300 for the two club seats and he almost fell out of his chair laughing. I agree the premium seat prices are WAY TOO HIGH! In fact, it's a real slap in the face to the fans. They are trying to sell tickets for MORE THAN TWICE market value and THEN lock you in for three years!!! My entertainment money will not be going to the bobcats this year.

Posted by: Bobs Cats | Aug 16, 2008 3:16:59 PM

I'm a season ticket holder. Although I didn't break the bank to get club level seats, I've got nice lower bowl corner seats on the isle across from the club level. I can touch the guy in club and spent $65/seat, which was down from $75 last year. I go to about half the games and sell the others in 5 game blocks. I don't have any problem selling them because most people dont mind spending $65/seat for 5 games. The problem comes when they are asked to invest in 41 games. The market allows me to sell in 5 game blocks, so thats what I do. Now one day the team will be competitive, then those same empty games some are complaining about now, will be sell outs, and you won't be able to get tickets to later. Its a double edged sword. Be careful what you ask for. If you want to go to a game, there is no reason to spend top dollar to sit in club, when there are plenty of other reasonably priced seats elsewhere in the arena.

Posted by: FuriousStyles | Aug 16, 2008 5:04:21 PM

I'm a season ticket holder. Although I didn't break the bank to get club level seats, I've got nice lower bowl corner seats on the isle across from the club level. I can touch the guy in club and spent $65/seat, which was down from $75 last year. I go to about half the games and sell the others in 5 game blocks. I don't have any problem selling them because most people dont mind spending $65/seat for 5 games. The problem comes when they are asked to invest in 41 games. The market allows me to sell in 5 game blocks, so thats what I do. Now one day the team will be competitive, then those same empty games some are complaining about now, will be sell outs, and you won't be able to get tickets to later. Its a double edged sword. Be careful what you ask for. If you want to go to a game, there is no reason to spend top dollar to sit in club, when there are plenty of other reasonably priced seats elsewhere in the arena.

Posted by: FuriousStyles | Aug 16, 2008 5:07:50 PM

This is a last place team and will always be until they disband in a few years.

Posted by: Toilet Face | Aug 16, 2008 5:13:58 PM

On paper the other eastern teams may look better, doesn't mean our guys are gonna lay down when they throw out the ball. We are still a young team with room for improvement. Let's see if LB can bring out the best in our talent, unlike Vincent.
Sure it would be nice to have a stud PF like Chris Bosh, don't think there was one available in the draft. Randolph or Jason Thompson, maybe down the road. Wouldn't mind parting with Gerald if the right guy was available, but Varajeou ain't that guy. Maybe Charlie Vill. if he ever grows up.
Let's see how the current guys play before we give up on the season. We may suck again but with May and Ammo back and improvements from Felton and Okafor, we could surprise some people.

Posted by: d-man | Aug 16, 2008 5:21:19 PM

How can you even say "with May back" and expect to be taken seriously?

He's been in the league 3 years and played in 58 games. Until he proves he can stay on the court, counting on him is about as wise a move as the Panthers counting on Dan Morgan all those years.

The only difference being that Morgan was a beast when he was healthy, May hasn't even shown that.

Posted by: Will | Aug 16, 2008 6:35:10 PM

Charlotte is a city of stuck up whiners that deserves nothing more than a soon to be bought out bank and the other headed north to NYC. Then lets see if any pro team including the Panthers would want to stay when the banking power is gone. Oh yeah and a newspaper that is finding itself irrelevant.

Posted by: JunBug | Aug 16, 2008 6:49:56 PM

The biggest thing keeping the Bobcats from drastic improvement is the fans (some who have commented on this article) that refuse to support a young and exciting team in our great city. Larry Brown will lead us to the playoffs. Maybe that's what it will take for Charlotte to truly get behind its hometown team!

Posted by: BP | Aug 16, 2008 7:00:13 PM

Mentioned May because he's who we got. He's probably a 5 on a 10 scale for PF. Not my 1st choice but what's the alternative. I figure that he is coming back as that's what I'm led to believe based on Las Vegas camp that he's at least running, working out, etc. Oden is coming back from same surgery at about the same time last year. If (I know, big if) he plays it's a better situation than Crash at the 4. What else we gonna do? Sign/trade for who? As for you negative fucks, go back to new jersey, yankee bastards.

Posted by: d-man | Aug 16, 2008 9:06:54 PM

Bonnell, any more updates of May's rehab and weight loss? A healthy May upgrades this team in terms of post scoring and rebounding, which are both needed. May's not the best on the defensive end but hopefully Ok can help out in that area. I know its a big if, but I feel that if May is healthy this season and Ammo turns into half the player the front office thought he would be, we will compete for the 7th/8th seed next year.

Posted by: Mason | Aug 16, 2008 10:06:35 PM

Rick...you're crazy. We HAVE our athletic big man in Ajinca. He would have been the first pick in the draft next year. Just ask Larry Brown.

And please...stop with the Dan Morgan comparisons...he was on the field about half the time. May hasn't even managed a quarter.

d-m, Greg Oden is not obese. Sean May is.

Posted by: Michael Procton | Aug 16, 2008 10:42:43 PM

man the pacers are better than you bobkakas anyday

Posted by: koko | Aug 16, 2008 10:54:58 PM

"Charlotte is a city of stuck up whiners that deserves nothing more than a soon to be bought out bank and the other headed north to NYC. Then lets see if any pro team including the Panthers would want to stay when the banking power is gone. Oh yeah and a newspaper that is finding itself irrelevant." <--- Go ahead and move then. We won't miss you.

Posted by: PantherDave | Aug 17, 2008 12:05:02 AM

Procton, I didn't know college dropouts could attain a doctors degree, nutritionist or some other profession that would allow you to make a claim that Sean May is obese. Hopefully you are not merely plugging his height and weight into the BMI index as any intelligent person knows that the BMI index can not be applied to athletes, espicially ones who focus on weight lifting. Certainly you have not seen or examined Sean's knee, nor would you even comprehend what you saw if you did see it. Yet you claim he is obese and that his weight was the direct cause of his injury. Doesn't matter that two of the more athletic and fit big men, Oden and Amare, suffered from the same injury and surgery. Seems a bit foolish to me, but I guess so do you.

Posted by: Mason | Aug 18, 2008 11:06:17 AM

You guys don't know what you're talkin about. Sean May is by far the best pick this team has made. He just had bad luck in his first 2 seasons trying to do too much.

He will come back healthy, he will be our starting PF, maybe even an All-Star this year. I want to see you guys at the end of the season when you see his stast hit 18ppg, 12rpg, 2bpg & 3apg.

Let the season begin, he'll even better than Okafor; maybe a 6'9" Howard!!!

Posted by: Guess Who??? | Aug 18, 2008 2:00:38 PM

Well if Bonnell is predicting lottery, then we can safely assume 6th in the East?

Posted by: apauldds | Aug 18, 2008 2:59:52 PM

I agree that the team's biggest problem so far is the lack of support from Charlotte "fans". I'm hoping the new tv deal will help to generate more support.

Posted by: Artofthefan_com | Aug 18, 2008 4:04:47 PM

Bob,

I was very surprised to read that we have the highest lower bowl prices in the NBA. What source are you using?

Posted by: Michael Thompson | Aug 18, 2008 4:48:22 PM

WAR AJINCA!!!!!!

Posted by: Jubal | Aug 18, 2008 10:41:29 PM

Completely agree with Bonnell...while most teams are getting better or focused on rebuilding, the bobcats are doing what they do best -- moving sideways. The boobs (err...bobs) had a chance to take Lopez, Chalmers, CDR. And they ended up with DJ, Ryan Hollins little brother, and a 2009 2nd rounder.

See you guys in the lottery next year. Cross your fingers for Blake Griffin!

Posted by: d.inscoe | Aug 19, 2008 2:55:49 AM

GW for Harrington might not be a bad trade. It makes our team extremely deep and dangerous from the outside, while getting a little more size. Don't get me wrong, I love GW, but we need him to play the 4, and that was ruled out after concussion.

lineup:

Felton/DJ
JR/Carroll/Felton (if DJ develops quickly)
Dudley/Ammo/JR (if DJ can play point)
Harrington/May
Okafor/Nazr

This team is deap AND

Posted by: HJ | Aug 19, 2008 10:18:14 AM

Hey Bonnell,

Is there something about...May/Morrison...


...that you would like to share with us?

Come on, at least pretend to do your job.

Posted by: RobC | Aug 19, 2008 1:00:48 PM

The product on the floor is not competitive, but the entire experience at the arena depresses me anytime I step inside the arena. Next time you are at the arena for a game or concert, interact with the folks in the box office, the people checking you at security, the people taking your tickets, the people who sell you cokes and hotdogs and the people who show you where your seats are. Watch their attitude and their willingness to bust their butt making sure you are helped efficiently and pleasantly. See if there isn't a common denominator that runs through the building....

Posted by: Randy Wilkins | Aug 19, 2008 7:15:11 PM

Lopez is slow and I am glad the Bobcats didn't take that dude. He would not have improved them team. He doesn't bring anything new to the table. Augustin was a good pick. The French dude might be a reach. I couldn't watch more than 10 minutes of the summer league games because the video was too grainy. The Bobcats will be more competitive than last year and they have a chance to win around 40 games.

Posted by: Token | Aug 20, 2008 8:41:25 AM

Bonnell-

Any thoughts on the PF spot? Doesn't have to be well researched, just a hunch...

May good enough (see healthy enough) to start?
Davidson-Hollins pupu platter?
Trade for a good one?
Nazr and Okafor to start again?

Posted by: bonnell=procton | Aug 20, 2008 9:55:31 AM

My gut feeling is we sign one more vet. at min. salary and go to camp with what we've got. Depending on how the season shapes up I could see LB orchestrating a big trade before deadline if it looks like we have a shot.

Posted by: apauldds | Aug 20, 2008 12:23:00 PM

Looks like the same-old, same-old. Here's how it works....

1. Hype the team, hype the UNC Connection, Make bold predictions. Hype LB. Hype May coming back. Try to sell hyped tickets.

2. Start the season and win a few games on adrenaline. Hype some more. Make more bold predictions.

3. After a few games, at least one player will be injured. May? Morrison? Wallace? Maybe two players. They will put on suits and sit on the bench. Talk about how the team will fight through adversity and do well.

4. Lose lots of games. The team turns into a pure jump-shooting team. No rebounds. Gets killed on the boards. Still hype those single game tickets.

5. Drop out of playoff race. Talk about how its still statistically possible. Start talking about how the team is probably only one player away. Talk about how the injury bug kept the team from the playoffs.

6. End season with talk about how much "promise" the team has. Talk about how the player's have progressed. Deposit ticket money. Leave town again.

Posted by: Enrique Gonzales | Aug 20, 2008 1:59:20 PM

I don't think Larry Brown on the bench qualifies as "same old, same old", but I do think it's a little early to write off the whole season already.

Posted by: Michael Thompson | Aug 20, 2008 6:10:30 PM

Hey how about signing Donyell Marshal to a one year deal once he clear waivers. He might come cheap since I don't think he has a lot of options and OKC has to pay him his $5M anyway. He will provide help as a PF with good shooting skills. He is also an expiring contract that can be used in any deal before the trading deadline.

Posted by: RobC | Aug 21, 2008 10:03:51 AM

Maybe Procton can help us with Marshal's stats, but I think they're in the range of 2/2 in 14min. Plus the guy is like 65 and has bad knees.

Posted by: apauldds | Aug 21, 2008 10:07:26 AM

If he came cheap enough, he wouldn't be a terrible big to round out the roster. It would be hard to be less productive than, say, Othella Harrington.

Posted by: Michael Procton | Aug 21, 2008 12:18:41 PM

Yep, that's what I mean. If he is chep he can be of some help either as from the bench or as part of a deal. His stats are more like 4-4 in 12+mins. He can be 7-5 in 18 mins. for the Cats. And he is a Big Guy that can meke Free Throws. I think he can have 1 more year left under his belt. IF he is cheap enough.

Posted by: RobC | Aug 21, 2008 3:16:06 PM

He's a threat from outside and an expiring. Can we get him for the vet min. or close?

Posted by: apauldds | Aug 21, 2008 3:21:22 PM

"Charlotte is a city of stuck up whiners that deserves nothing more than a soon to be bought out bank and the other headed north to NYC. Then lets see if any pro team including the Panthers would want to stay when the banking power is gone"

Great take the bobcats and the rest of the northeners with you...None of you will be missd at all

Posted by: Chris | Aug 21, 2008 4:16:22 PM

HEY BONNELL...DID YOU CAME BACK FROM VACATIONS?????

CAN YOU JUST SAY SOMETHING?????

DO YOU WORK FOR THE OBSERVER PRO-BONO OR DO YOU ACTUALLY GET PAID FOR NOTHING?????

ITS BEEN A WEEK SINCE YOUR LAST ARTICLE, AT LEAST PRETEND TO DO YOUR JOB!!!!!

Posted by: RobC | Aug 22, 2008 1:17:36 PM

Since we haven't gotten anything new to talk about I figured I would just continue with the current blog. I have to say that I agree w/ Bonnell in that if I were a betting man, I would be betting against the cats to make the playoffs. Obviously not counting them out by any means, just looking at the improvement across the Eastern conference and unless a top 8 team falls or sufers some key injuries, I think the cats finish 9th or 10th in the East. I think both Chicago and Miami bounce back and are playoff teams next season.

Posted by: Mason | Aug 22, 2008 3:22:33 PM

Its hard to believe that you guys making these comments can read, write, go on dates and order food in a restaurant. There are professional teams in every sport that have to endure many many seasons between playoff appearances. There are also teams that have never won a championship. The Bobcats are only 3 years old. Stop whinning and give the team and management a chance to figure out what it takes to be a winner.

Posted by: Al E | Aug 25, 2008 3:40:44 PM

AI E:

I understand what you're saying. But just two things.

1.) The Bobcats are going into their 5th season.

2.) I don't mind when a team make risky moves with the intention of getting better and still don't make the playoffs. At least they're trying.

But when you trade for a 20th pick and end up paying guaranteed money to a guy that has never been anything and he never will, that's frustrating. And when you know that you messed up with your 2nd rounder, meaning you did the same mistake twice in the same night, I get upset as a fan, and I have the right to talk about it. And is even more frustrating when you have done that in 3 of your last 4 Draft Nights. After all I do like the NBA, I like the Bobcats Team (Not the FOffc.) and I do pay to go to the games.

Posted by: RobC | Aug 25, 2008 5:59:13 PM

Is there EVER going to be another article posted?!

Posted by: BustaCat | Aug 27, 2008 12:24:48 AM

Hey BONNELL or anybody...

Do you have any additional info about ESPN reporting that the Bobcats are looking for a way to bring back Alonzo Mourning to Charlotte. Any thoughts?

www.sports.espn.go.com/nba/players

Posted by: Crash Fan | Aug 27, 2008 1:11:59 PM

Problem is, CF, Zo just had ANOTHER knee surgery. He won't be back until December at the earliest, and maybe not until February. We may want him on the team, but I would certainly NOT advocate using salary and a roster spot until he's a lot closer to being ready to go.

Posted by: Michael Procton | Aug 27, 2008 1:32:20 PM

Bobcats.com has some new material up if you are looking for an update on the team.

Posted by: Web | Aug 29, 2008 3:04:32 AM

Hey Charlotte, I don't understand all the ins and outs of Pro Basketball. I'm trying hard to digest when you need a BIG,POWERFul, POST player now, why you would bypass some really good BIG MEN that are going to eat your lunch at game time, on hopes of a prospect mannnnnnnnnnny years down the road at best maybe. I have a 15 year old son that could post up your big man.

Please come on Charlotte, I am a faithful fan but please come into the 21st century and at least keep pace with the league so we have hope of a .500 season.

Posted by: roc | Aug 30, 2008 7:05:27 AM

Since Bonnell isn't posting, here is a question I have on second round picks. How long can a team keep the rights to a second rounder without signing him? I know they get a year after a pick plays for a team outside of the NBA (see Devon Hardin with OKC), this acts as a kind of developmental stage. But what if the player doesn't sign with a European or Developmental League team? At what point can teams pursue other teams unsigned second round picks?

I bring this up because Joey Dorsey is still unsigned with the Rockets, who have a full roster as it is. How long do they own his rights?

Posted by: BustaCat | Aug 31, 2008 7:13:56 PM

Sections 4 and 5:
http://www.nbpa.com/cba_articles/article-X.php#section4

Posted by: Michael Procton | Sep 2, 2008 10:16:28 AM

In Dorsey's case, it would seem that he is either under the Rockets' umbrella until next year if he has been offered a rookie-min. tender, or he'll be an unrestricted FA as of the 5th if they haven't.

Posted by: Michael Procton | Sep 2, 2008 10:23:57 AM

Post a comment






Advertisements