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February 20, 2010

Wow. 3-1 over the Cavs

Some stray thoughts about the slap-across-the-face the Charlotte Bobcats gave the Cleveland Cavaliers:

-- Coach Larry Brown was in a particularly funny, effusive mood following this one. Turns out this was about more than winning. Close buddy Doug Moe told him how boring and morose he was in post-game interviews. So LB livened it up.

I asked him how improvisational it got with two new players on the court when it counted, and not having practiced.

Larry said it reminded him of "run to the fire hydrant, and cut left'' touch football. If that sounds like an exaggeration, you should know this: Tyrus Thomas said he forgot everything he heard in a pre-game cram session, yet still had a major impact on the game. Just shows how much you can accomplish if you play hard and play smart, even without a rehearsal.

 -- Some of you might have read my blog from the morning, quoting a Bobcats insider predicting D.J. Augustin should benefit from Flip Murray being traded. Understandably, Augustin dismissed that (who would want to sound like he's gleeful a teammate was traded?), but Friday suggested this is true.

Augustin and Felton are similar people: The same reason you'd want either one as a next-door neighbor (respectful, kind, the product of great parenting) sometimes hinders them as butt-kicking athletes. They're both pleasers, perhaps to the extreme.

-- I've gotten some emails, asking why the Bobcats would have even considered acquiring T.J. Ford from the Indiana Pacers at the trade deadline.

Some thoughts:
 First off, you'll notice they didn't pull a trigger. There's no harm in listening. In fact, Rod Higgins wouldn't be doing his job in the absence of listening.

Here are the subtlties: Raymond Felton will be an unrestricted free agent in July. Of course he wants to be here, but he (or at least his agents) want to break the bank. The whole point of getting to unrestricted is you're unencumbered. Which means the Bobcats could lose him for nothing.

Do I think that will happen? No. But if I were Rod Higgins, I'd have a fall-back plan. And as well as Augustin played Friday, I wouldn't assume he's ready to be a day-in/day-out starting point guard in this league.
 That made it worth exploring possibilities.

-- I have to believe Friday was a great day to be Higgins. The best and worst thing about Brown is he challenges everyone around him to be great. Brown so publicly challenged Higgins to find him a backup power forward, that it must have been really unpleasant. And then at the deadline, Higgins delivered Thomas.

 I doubt Michael Jordan ends up with the Bobcats, which might mean a lot of people lose their jobs. Higgins would be among those who might go. I suspect he thinks I don't think much of him. But if anyone asked me for a job recommendation, I'd say Rod is smart, patient, and deserves more authority.

Posted by Observer Sports on February 20, 2010 at 12:33 AM | Permalink


higgins has always reminded me of an omar minaya, to draw a baseball analogy: he's had some luck making impact moves early on, but at the end of the day, he's no john shuerholtz and i wouldn't be surprised if he became inundated with criticism in a couple years if this team doesn't continue to perform in a positive manner... silly analogy, i know, but i still think it holds some truth... curiously, why dont you think jordan will end up with the majority ownership of the team, bonnell? Just trying to pick your brain on that one..... would love to hear your 2 cents on that.

Posted by: tmack | Feb 20, 2010 1:12:16 AM

Rick, I'm curious about your last paragraph doubting the speculation that Jordan may become owner. From what Stern and Brown were saying it seemed likely to me. You have some insight you could share with us?

Posted by: Rob | Feb 20, 2010 1:24:15 AM

Bonnell....wow you've really shocked me this time with your stupidity. Jordan will be the owner and he will have some All-Stars as co-owners.....Tiger Woods and Phil Knight will be involved.

Posted by: Andy | Feb 20, 2010 3:40:25 AM

Yeah, the line doubting MJ ends up with the Bobcats is troubling, especially since LB seems to be pretty confident in this happening. As a guy who's followed Coach Brown's career closely, I know he doesn't like uncertainty and if MJ isn't around, I can see Coach Brown quickly looking for another opportunity, unless the new owner immediately went out of his, or her (I'm being politically correct now) way to show LB how much it would mean to the Cats to have him on the bench.

Posted by: Ari | Feb 20, 2010 4:03:06 AM

Brown has repeatedly said that the only reason he came here was because of MJ. I seriously doubt he would stick around a play for a new owner. MJ wants to own the team but I get the impression he doesn't want to put up much of his own money to buy the controlling interest. I undertstand he has to own at least 15% to be the controling owner. I don't know what percentagae he owns now, but it probably means that he would have to come up with 30 million dollars out of pocket. Not a sure thing by any stretch.

Posted by: truthjustice | Feb 20, 2010 8:05:16 AM

MJ does not have the $$ to pull this off. It will be the guy from Houston at the end of the day.

Posted by: james reed | Feb 20, 2010 1:21:40 PM

I would love to see MJ get the team for the sake of Larry Brown and the fact that Jordan's name may help bring is some future players/coaches. But realistically, Postolois may be the better answer for the franchise long term. As history has shown, and given his age, Brown isn't going to be here too much longer regardless of owner. From what I have read, Postolis did a great job during his time with the Rockets and that should bring hope to this young franchise. I think he'd be a much more active owner than Jordan and would probably be less absentee that what we've experienced thus far. Keeping Brown should not be the sole reason for MJ to get this franchise. Yes he's the best coach we've ever had, but who are we comparing him to, really? If he were to leave, that would suck, but wouldn't be the end of the world. There are plenty of other great coaches out there that could continue to push this franchise to new heights. I would love an owner truly dedicated to the success of his own franchise, not just his own name.

Posted by: EricH | Feb 20, 2010 2:13:54 PM

hey rick,
i see that you're not talking anymore about temas, adpating to jackson and crash anymore, and that it is the reason we lost so many time?

that a weird thing...where are all the doubters of last cats/nets game?
come on guys! give your point now!

Posted by: greg | Feb 20, 2010 3:03:32 PM

good job cats for not letting the NJ loss get to u

but about that game, the Nets did not look like the horrible team they are now, they shooting shots out of their ass that they haven done all season, they played an almost perfect game

Posted by: parker | Feb 20, 2010 5:07:29 PM

Oh, shut the h_ll up, EricH.

"I would love an owner truly dedicated to the success of his own franchise, not just his own name."

And I guess you don't believe that Michael would be concerned with its success?

And what the heck does "HIS OWN" mean?

Posted by: EC | Feb 20, 2010 5:09:41 PM

This a the best bobcats team ever assemble since it's existence. Tell me who put this team together, from GM to players, MJ. He may have made some bad mistakes with trades and also with the draft, in the past. But it seems to me he is finally catching on. He has assemble a great team to win now, and also in the future. If ya'll are true bobcats fans, ya'll should be thanking MJ. Look at where we have come from to now, fighting for a playoffs spot. I never in my mind saw this coming at the begining of the season. But MJ turn it around, and gave us a winning team. So with that, at the begining of the season I would have never this, but now, I wouldsn't mind MJ being the owner

Posted by: Deon | Feb 20, 2010 6:39:33 PM

Rick - quite the bomb you just dropped their about MJ. I too think that comment deserves a little more meat. What's going on?

Posted by: HJ | Feb 20, 2010 6:42:42 PM


Posted by: HJ | Feb 20, 2010 6:43:32 PM

There is no meat on this one. Bonnell was just making the story more interesting by expressing a personal opinion. Controversy means more blog comments.

Posted by: Vegetarian | Feb 20, 2010 7:32:39 PM

That was just how I felt about the situation, it was nothing against Mr Bonnell. I respect his opinion and he does a wonderful job, and I really appreciate his work. Thank You Mr Bonnell

Posted by: Deon | Feb 20, 2010 7:35:19 PM

These guys can't even move tonight.

Apparently being the road team on a back to back is a guaranteed loss in the NBA, like all the teams have conceded that, anyway.

At this point, it doesn't look like the Bobcats are going to even try to show up tonight.

Posted by: EC | Feb 20, 2010 9:09:51 PM

EC, if you want to disagree with what I have to say, which you are more than entitled to do, at least do so intelligently. "His own" is pretty self explanatory. I don't feel that MJ has absolutely no concern over the franchise and I never said so. However, when you are a part owner yet refuse to do any appearances with/for the majority owner for the benefit of your franchise without requesting additional compensation/pay, I would say that sends me a message that you are more concerned about selling your own name than you are with your franchise. Yes Michael has finally assembled a respectable product on the court and has made many decent to good decisions with the team that are beginning to trump previously made poor decisions. He may even turn out to be a decent majority owner if he buys the team. It was my opinion however, which I am entitled to have, that Postolis may be better for the franchise in the long run. I often read that majority of people want MJ to stay because that means Brown will stay and I feel that is a poor reason to decide a team's future owner when eventually that coach is going to be gone anyways and you will still have to search for a new staff. Quite simply, change isn't always bad. Just look at our roster. It is littered with players who either struggled, clashed, or were just not given the proper chance with their previous teams and greatly benefited from a fresh start here in Charlotte. This starts with Gerald Wallace all the way to the newly acquired Tyrus Thomas including Captain Jack and Boris Diaw. Needless to say, change isn't always a bad thing and many times can bring great benefits.

Posted by: EricH | Feb 21, 2010 1:54:56 AM

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