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September 18, 2010

I don't understand the negativity

I've been reading a lot of "It's going to be a long season'' comments concerning the Bobcats.

I've got to tell you I'm surprised by that. And since many of you have accused me of being Mr. Negative, I'd think you'd listen.

I'm not saying everything is rosy. I think they'll be about the same team they were by the end of last season: A group that will be one of the last three franchises in the East to make the playoffs, and will likely be eliminated in the first round. But 12 months ago, they weren't that.

I predicted in the preseason a year ago that they wouldn't reach the playoffs with the roster that showed up for training camp. They wouldn't have. The Stephen Jackson trade made them viable because they had nothing vaguely resembling a first offensive option.

I had this fascinating conversation with Celtics coach Doc Rivers a month after the Jackson trade, following up on what Rivers said following that opening-night blowout. Rivers said the Bobcats were so bad offensively that, if league rules allowed it, you would have played them in a college-style zone with every defender leaving one foot in the lane.

Jackson demands double-teams, which is something you have to elicit from the other team. He might be high-maintenance and he might be expensive, but he addresses a problem.

I read a lot in your comments about how shaky the Bobcats are at point guard and center. I totally agree. But as a guy who is constantly accused of being a glass-half-empty sort, I'm surprised you miss the point that they've never entered the preseason with more collective talent and experience.

That's no small thing, by the way. In order to fix the roster, the Bobcats have made a slew of in-season trades the past two seasons. Some were good. Some were bad (see: Gana Diop). They acquired Boris Diaw and Raja Bell in Larry Brown's first season. Then they got Jackson early in Brown's second season and Tyrus Thomas just before the deadline.

Brown welcomes change, and is better than most coaches at adapting on the fly. But change is hard (just ask Diaw, who I think is still trying to find his role, post-Jackson).

The point here is the Bobcats are a better team than they've ever been entering training camp, and less likely to be shaken up than any team in the Brown era. Some continuity might be a plus. They have material to work with in Jackson, Gerald Wallace, Diaw and Tyrus Thomas.

Maybe for once a Brown team won't have to make up for a slow start. I'm not saying they'll surprise. I'm simply saying (barring major injury) they'll be no worse than the team that clinched the playoffs last season.

Posted by Observer Sports on September 18, 2010 at 08:02 PM | Permalink

Comments

Mr. Bonnell I agree, we really did not lose anything that can't be replaced. Felton got better last yr, but he was still an average pg, Tyson, wasnt and won't be healthy and Ajinca, I'll just leave at that. We are a better team, than we were last yr. I feel we have a bright future with young guys like DJ, Gerald, Thomas, livingston to add with the older guys.

Posted by: Deon | Sep 18, 2010 8:25:25 PM

Umm... Hello! We don't have a friggin' point guard- the most important position of them all! Raymond was no All-Star, but he's heads and shoulders better than what we've got. I guess we'll just let Jackson bring it up and fire away like he did in the playoffs. This team has no leader (Gerald's too quiet) and will struggle mightily to compete. No way we make the playoffs w/ this roster.

Posted by: jrguyiii | Sep 18, 2010 8:39:53 PM

Bobcats will be good...but in that division it's going to be super tough. I mean the Heat...with the big 3 ya ya we've all heard it a thousand times...but they're going to be amazing. Then there's Howard & Orlando...we all know how good they are. Then we have to deal w/ Atlanta...and as much as I hate to say it...Atlanta has a really good, top level, team. And he11, now even Washington has John Wall and could win some games. But we know we can at least hang w/ Orlando, Atlanta and Washington (Orlando not as much) ...so we should at least have a chance to be as good (if not better than) last season. I mean Orlando, Atlanta & Miami were all better (record-wise) than the Bobcats last season and we still made the Playoffs, so the Playoffs should not be out of site this year. I'm excited for some Bobcats basketball! Go BCats!

Posted by: Greg | Sep 18, 2010 8:55:41 PM

sight....geez...

Posted by: Greg | Sep 18, 2010 8:59:08 PM

...but we do need a PG...desperately...

Posted by: Greg | Sep 18, 2010 8:59:44 PM

I think the Bobcats will be vying for the 7th-8th spot this year. CHI improved their roster dramatically in adding Booze and NY got better with Stoud. Doesn't mean the 'Cats can't compete, but I don't think the playoffs will be a shoe-in this year.

NY and Washington may be knocking on our door, and the #8 spot will be down to us vs. either of those teams.

All of the others: MIA, ATL, ORL, BOS, MIL, CHI are pretty much locks to make the post-season, barring injuries.

The only team that regressed is CLE, but again, with MO there, who knows what they may do. They may actually be competitive and going for the 7th-8th spot too.

Posted by: Kenneth | Sep 18, 2010 9:20:26 PM

I'm with you Rick- we are much better off than a year ago at this time. And Greg is right- Miami, Orlando, Atlanta were all ahead of us last year too. Cleveland and Toronto seem destined for early exits now, New York and Chicago are marginally better. We still have a good shot at the playoffs adn a good record. 6 weeks til season starts!

Posted by: Jake | Sep 18, 2010 9:26:44 PM

The downgrade from Felton to Augustin will cost the team seven wins. Four if Livingston plays as well as he did in Washington.

Larry Brown will play Boris Diaw too much and Ty Thomas too little.

Any minutes that Matt Carroll, Kwame Brown, or Eduardo Najera receive will hurt the team.

"Because Stephen Jackson can spot up for jump shots, the Bobcats can overcome the gaping holes in its line-up." What?

The best-case scenario for the Bobcats this season is 35 wins. A formal prediction that this team will be better than last year's team makes me wonder about your analysis, Rick.

The sooner the front office realizes that the Bobcats are a lottery team for the next two years, the better our opportunity to rebuild with a measured, long-term plan.

Posted by: Bill | Sep 18, 2010 10:54:09 PM

Rick, I appreciate your comments, but I can only agree with a few of your points.

"The point here is the Bobcats are a better team than they've ever been entering training camp." True. But is this meeting the fans' expectations?

"I'm simply saying (barring major injury) they'll be no worse than the team that clinched the playoffs last season." I'm not so sure. Is this statement consistent with acknowledging (as you did) the shabbiness at such crucial positions as PG and C?

To be fair, I think there is a good chance we'll see improved performance from the young players: Henderson, D. Brown and mainly from Tyrus Thomas - who was already doing a very good job last season, and should get more playing time this season. Well, this will probably make up for what is lost with the departures of experienced and useful players like Larry Hughes (who replaced Murray) and Stevie Graham.
However, I don't think that what we have now compensates in any way for getting weaker at PG and C.

I can understand that getting into luxury tax territory for the sake of re-signing Felton was unjustifiable (especially after the playoffs). But I was hoping for a good trade move to take care of that position (for a solid PG such as Jarrett Jack, for instance, or for Ramon Sessions, who was traded after last season), and evidently this didn't happen.

Sure, Chandler wasn't a great center, but just as sure, we were better off with him than with Kwame Brown. His expiring contract was a great trade asset. The way it was used is, in my opinion, a waste (I commented in more detail on this under Scott's recent article).

My hope was that the Bobcats will improve their roster this summer, through some smart trade moves, without signing any FA that gets us to the luxury tax. I'm frustrated to see that this didn't happen.

I leave prophecies about making the playoffs next season to anybody who feels they have the gift to do it. All I can say is that I hope the 'Cats will be in the playoffs, but this will be really tough to achieve with the current roster. I also think that, in a town full of fairweather fans, not making better player personnel moves this summer, and going into the next season with what we have now, is a very risky deal.

Posted by: Sandy | Sep 18, 2010 11:07:06 PM

I generally agree with your synopsis Rick.

Most level headed fans realize the Bobcats are still decent and will probably remain a 38 to 44 win team. But these same fans also recognize that given the Cats’ present talent and inflexible cap position, such mediocrity (i.e. 7-8 seed 1st round doormat status) is as good as it gets.

My longstanding gripe has been that they’ve basically mortgaged their future to taste the playoffs in the interim and in doing so, they’ve plateaued talent wise and have ruined their cap flexibility for upcoming years. Casual fans were impressed with their playoff birth. Unfortunately, they have no prayer at winning a series because they took expensive shortcuts in building the roster to get to this point.

They’ll probably make the playoffs again this year but the result will be the same.

Meanwhile, while the cats tread water as a fringe playoff team and core players like Jackson and Wallace get another year older, the team will be missing out on the opportunity to draft franchise changing players like Harrison Barnes who could eventually lead them to something greater.

Posted by: dmutombo | Sep 19, 2010 12:53:35 AM

Wallace, imo, is a star....a star that doesn't get nearly enough credit by pundits. Brilliant defensive player, a good scrorer, and a motivator and a leader by example.

Stephen Jackson's multi-faceted game has improved every team he's been on. He's finally showing signs of maturity.

Thomas and Diaw are the best talent we've had in our froncourt in franchise history. This is coming from a guy who admired what Okafor brought to the table.

With that base and Brown's coaching, I just don't see us missing the playoffs.

Posted by: cornchip | Sep 19, 2010 4:33:35 AM

We have a pretty good core, Gerald, Jackson, Diaw and Thomas. These are four quality players. Hopefully Diaw will play more like he did in his first season here than he did after the trade for Jackson and hopefully Thomas will mature into a first rate player, I believe he will.

We have mediocre and sub-mediocre players at the point and center. Nazr is a fine player in limited minutes. Don't know how much Kwame will help but doubt that we'll get much if anything out of Diop. Let's not forget D.J. is only in his third season. He will get the chance to prove himself this season. It's a great opportunity, with great pressure. He will show us wether he has what it takes. Remember, this season has plenty of players who needed a few seasons to get up to speed. It will be interesting to see how Livingstone turns out, he seems to have had a rebirth of sorts late last season, let's hope that it continues.

Overall I don't think we are much worse off than last season. The playoffs are within reach but some players will have to really step up if we are to advance any further or win a few games.

Posted by: The Icelandic Bobcats Fan | Sep 19, 2010 5:57:08 AM

We have nba-caliber starters at only 3 of the 5 positions(2,3, and 4). We will have to do yet another in-season major trade.

Posted by: DeLaQuest | Sep 19, 2010 7:04:31 AM

Michael Jordan is basically the gm. He's making all the decisions. You get what you ask for I guess. For me letting Felton go was a bad decision. While not the best PG he worked hard for the team and the community! The way he was ignored at free agency was a spit in the face, IMO! They practically loss their s#%t to sign Thomas. Felton was the heart of that team! Wallace, yeah he's good but what happened at All Star game and USA tryouts? Was he just not interested? Jackson is good too but he's over thirty. However, at least he has personality and you can understand him when he speaks. I'm surprised that DJ is given much room to grow when all Felton got was crap for not being better! Go figure!

Posted by: Digal704 | Sep 19, 2010 7:10:49 AM

DJ is not ready to lead this team and be an NBA starter. If he proves me wrong, I'll be happy he did, but nothing he has shown in his 2 seasons gives me confidence. What still gets me is how people think Diaw will somehow turn on a switch and become a consistent player at a high level? Diaw will forever be a tease, with some quality skills but little dedication or determination to use them every night. Doris Meow is my name for him...a guy who plays in mood cycles, like he's got a female hormone imbalance or something. People rave anbout his passing, but look at his hideous turnover rate in may games? He's not physical, passes up open shots, and often plays with no passion. Start Tyrus. People say he's not a starter. Well, he's being paid like one and we just invested a lot of years in him, so just do it and trade Diaw when we can get some decent value back.

Posted by: Bassman | Sep 19, 2010 8:41:04 AM

I think dmutombo's point is spot-on and merits repeating:

"My longstanding gripe has been that [the Bobcats have] basically mortgaged their future to taste the playoffs in the interim and in doing so, they’ve plateaued talent wise and have ruined their cap flexibility for upcoming years. Casual fans were impressed with their playoff birth. Unfortunately, they have no prayer at winning a series because they took expensive shortcuts in building the roster to get to this point."

Posted by: Bill | Sep 19, 2010 9:12:11 AM

Bill,

I would counter your argument with by saying short term success can help build long term stability....or at least it's a calculated approach that Bobcat management is taking.

I honestly believe that it will take ALOT for the Bobcats to NOT make the playoffs this year. I'm talking about a big time injury to our core and two or more of the lottery teams from last year making a big jump (Pacers have the best chance imo, but still not a great one). We're not going to challenge the Heat, Bulls, Magic anytime soon with this core, so rightfully the focus should be on getting to the playoffs while at the same time saving money. That way, investors see a good on-court brand with a management team who knows how to save. That's a really attractive package to some investors who might be still trying to find their way after the recession.

I think alot of you guys are thinking in terms of player contracts when it comes to long term stability.....when there is more to it than that. Winning now while saving money will bring in the money so we can be more liberal spending on players down the road. We didn't get alot better over the offseason player wise, but I do think we made moves that made us attractive in the big picture. That all could change, of course, if we disappoint on the court....but I just don't see that happening.

Posted by: cornchip | Sep 19, 2010 11:16:27 AM

Felton didn't play the speed we need coming up court and his numbers matched djs in equal minutes.

They've had time to gel whereas in other years there's been too much flux, especially for larrys offense. Tyrus and diaw can play off each other like jax and gforce. Diaw is a better 5 than any 5 we've had(see queencityhoops.com). ghenderson and dbrown, with Livingston improve our bench scoring and turnovers and shot selections. Kwame is no worse than tyson. Tyson start 20+ games but was only effective the last ten of the year.

Rick, with all of that, the east improved a little more than we did. They'll compete and the opposing team won't put out garbage at the end of games. That's what I care about. One possession better than others is all I care about...and no Boston beatdowns like last year. Punch em in the nose! says oh.

Posted by: altheus | Sep 19, 2010 11:35:39 AM

Indeed a lot of negativity, Rick. I believe much of it stems from the understanding of what the Cats did in taking back the Carroll/Najera contracts and the foolish hope that we were going to get a very nice player in a soon-to-be trade of the Dampier contract. (Hey, I was a fool hoping for a trade of that contract too! ;-)

Rick, can you explain how taking MC/Najera's contracts on for Chandler's contract-- which was expiring--- was a good move from a financial or basketball standpoint?

I have, (minus the above mentioned contracts), been fairly optimistic. Like many others here, signing KBrown for basically nothing is not a problem for me in light of how injury-prone Chandler is. Also, there has not been too much of rebellion against letting Felton walk for nothing. After Nelson couldn't perform as he did against Felton in last year's Round 1, it was Raymond's curtain-call.

Truth be told, we are lucky that the general consensus here is "playoff berth".

In light of incredibly bad drafting and contracts (Nazr, Diop) we are still going to get into the dance.

The fans who post here love the Cats, but house cleaning is in order regarding the GM staff.

Also, I can only have the highest of hopes that MJ is looking down the road to post Larry Brown.

Posted by: The Dark Knight | Sep 19, 2010 12:25:10 PM

My opinion of the Bobcats this upcoming season is the same as it always is. I'm a fan. If they were as bad as New Jersey was last year I would still support them. That being said this should be an ok year. Nothing fantastic, but a good season. Loosing Felton was bad, but couldn't be helped. Someone said Felton was ignored this summer. If that's the case why did he sign with New York for the exact same money we offered him last year? We have to move on with out him. I don't think it will be as painful as some of you. We don't have a good pointguard or a good center. Neither does Miami, but everyone still expects them to dominate. Why? Because of the other positions. We might not be as strong as they are at those positions, but we are pretty strong. Gerald and Jack are going to give teams fits no matter who the pointguard is. The glass is half full.

Posted by: Geraldmutumbo | Sep 19, 2010 1:53:49 PM

The negativity comes from the fact that all their moves are apparently to free up cap space and they have either traded away or wasted all their draft picks. This roster is weak in several areas, and they are woefully short on tradeable pieces anymore.

But hey, keep preaching that optimism Rick. It's not a lie if you believe it.

Posted by: TP | Sep 19, 2010 2:15:46 PM

A little correction, Altheus. I don't know what you meant by saying that "Felton's numbers matched DJ's in equal minutes", but I know that these are two very different players, and that numbers are not the whole story (evidently).

Felton is a real team leader, he matured every season and this showed in his ability to be a "floor general". This is not in the numbers, but you saw it if you watched him playing, through the years. As for the stats, I'll say it again: the most important for a point guard is the assists. Raymond averages 6.4 Apg in 34.9 mpg, DJ averages 2.9 Apg in 22.2 mpg.
Well, that's 7.3 Apg for Raymond vs. 5.2 Apg for DJ per 40 minutes; not so equal... DJ's biggest weakness, in my opinion, is regarding his ability to be a floor leader at the NBA level. He showed very little of it (to put it in nice terms) in his two seasons as a Bobcat.
For the rest: Raymond is a better defender than DJ (yes, I didn't forget Jameer and the playoffs, but you can't ignore his work in the regular season, which helped bring us to the playoffs), also a better rebounder, he's more effective on the drive thanks to using his superior upper body strength, but DJ has a clear edge over Raymond for long range shooting.

Look, I wrote that giving Raymond a new contract would've taken the 'Cats into paying luxury tax, and that couldn't be justified (especially after the playoffs; though, what Jameer did against Raymond has a lot to do with how the 'Cats team defense was organized in this series, not just with the players' ability). But, I always appreciated this player, and I think you can be as positive as you want to be about the next season without throwing in a slight on Felton (as in : he's gone, no big deal; that's wrong).

Here is the positive spin I can put in the PG situation: DJ should play in the starting line-up, Diaw and Jax are very capable of helping him run the team and move the ball, then you can see DJ spotting up for 3s, and helping our offense with his shooting. Also, I didn't miss his honest effort last season to improve his defense, and stay in front of the players he's guarding. He still has long ways to go in defense, but he's trying. I can only hope that becoming the starting PG will help improve DJ's confidence, and thus, his ability to do the job.

Will this be enough for the team to be as good as the team that won 44 games and made the playoffs last season? I already stated my opinion, but I don't enjoy being a party-pooper, and I won't repeat it. We'll wait and see.
Besides, I agree with DeLaQuest: a good trade during the season (as the 'Cats did in the last two seasons) is needed.

Posted by: Sandy | Sep 19, 2010 5:52:08 PM

It cannot be denied that they have drafted terribly lately. Felton was too small and would always have been a liablity. Oops, what does that say for Augustin? That said, I'll wait and see and hope. The Bobcats have to start drafting well or they are never going to get better in the long run.

Posted by: Brian | Sep 19, 2010 7:26:33 PM

I am so sick of you all saying " we have no PG" Open your eyes you have one of the most talented pure point guards ever to play in the NBA. Shaun Livingston. When he started with the clippers they made the playoffs for the first time in over 25 years ( they havent been back since) and If you compare the stats of his teammates on the wizards on nights he played against nights he didn't play you can obviously see he makes his teammates better. That is what Shaun does he simply makes everyone on his team better simply by his presences on the court.

Posted by: Jerry Freudenburg | Sep 19, 2010 8:44:28 PM

Rick,

I think your point articulates why I am disappointed. You are right - they are the same as last year. As we have watched teams in our conference improve themselves, we have stayed the same. I guess I want to see an effort to get better, not just stay in the 7th/8th spot. I compare us to Atlanta, not because of talent or team makeup, but improvement. We did nothing to take a next step, and that is frustrating as a fan who invests both time and money (season tickets) to this team.

That being said - I will be behind this team day 1, hoping DJ takes the next step and Livingston (who my people in DC did say looked pretty good last month of season) continues his comeback and is a solid player.

Posted by: HJ | Sep 19, 2010 10:49:22 PM

Jerry F., I certainly didn't forget about Shaun Livingston, and I agree with you - up to a point. There are post-injury limitations on his game, regarding the playing time his knee can take and his diminished athletic ability. I trust his team-leading and passing ability, but that doesn't make him yet a dependable starting point guard - due to said limitations.
I really think he can make the second unit young guys better, and he probably should split minutes at point-guard about even with D.J. Augustin. That means, part of the time he'd play with the starters.
I still think, though, that letting D.J. play in the starting line-up is the best and most effective way of using him.

Posted by: Sandy | Sep 20, 2010 12:13:34 AM

HJ,

What move could we feasibly make to get out the first round this season? I think we did the right thing by proving that we were financially responsible. Alot of fans don't see the 2nd and 3rd order effects of that, but I believe that it will help our team down the road.

Posted by: cornchip | Sep 20, 2010 4:16:34 AM

DJ will be a fine PG. He had a great rookie season just 1 year ago and we were all talking about how soon Raymond was going to be replaced by DJ. One of the reasons DJ was so good in his rookie season, is because he played most of the time with the Starting Lineup. I really believe he will benefit from being a starter and he can become something similar to Damon Stoudemire in his peak. He handles the ball extremely well, he will have more dependable players around him, he can definetly score and he is pretty fast & athletic.

Last season DJ didn't do too well, in part for the inconsistency in his role, and he never played with the starting lineup. However, he did played better than Raymond in the playoffs (with the starters). I'm a Season Ticket Holder and I seat just 3 rows behind the Bobcats bench. It was impressing how Jackson was beggin Coach Brown to leave DJ in the game and seat Raymond. I think the Bobcats need a decent Center, more than they need a PG. Diaw should benefit from the fact that there's no true starting PG and that should help him be better this season (hopefully) and maybe increase his value for an mid season trade.

Posted by: RobC | Sep 20, 2010 11:49:31 AM

just wanted to say that as much as i'm an ultimate optimist who thinks DJ will have a break out year to somewhat save this from being a disaster.......we have the worst GM/front office arraingement in the league. this has to be fixed. we gave up like 8 million in next year's salary for suits. that doesn't include diop's 7.

they gotta stop making those moves. that's where the negativity comes from. we make the playoffs finally and then shoot ourselves in the face in the offseason.

Posted by: charlottean | Sep 20, 2010 12:12:53 PM

Rick,
In your opinion, how much did Raymond's contract year affect DJ's regression last year?

Posted by: BallerCat | Sep 20, 2010 12:32:12 PM

1.) Miami Heat
2.) Orlando Magic
3.) Boston Celtics
4.) Chicago Bulls
5.) Atlanta Hawks
6.) Milwaukee Bucks
7.) Charlotte Bobcats
8.) Cleveland Cavaliers or New York Knicks

Posted by: RobC | Sep 20, 2010 3:30:24 PM

Dont forget about Detroit and Washington. Charlotte Bobcats will be fine! Added news should be coming in a few weeks that will help this team go deeper in the playoffs! GO BOBCATS!!!

Posted by: BobcatsFriend | Sep 20, 2010 6:44:06 PM

YES I'M NEGATIVE, Felton is gone. Bobcats need a pg and a center. THAT'S A FACT.

Posted by: JC | Sep 20, 2010 7:23:44 PM

Cornchip,

Great question. I will stand behind my proposal I made before...which is impossible now. Package Diaw, Augustine and Dampier (can't do now) for either Monte Ellis or Gilbert Arenas. I know - a dice roll and could blow up, but I really think that having a big 3 of Jack/GW/Arenas or Ellis gets us to the second round and a very scary team.

Now? I guess you stick to what you have and be financially responsible. I would always be looking for the next Stephen Jackson - a guy we take a risk on that works out.

Posted by: HJ | Sep 20, 2010 9:12:49 PM

Rick,
You have got to be doing something illegal because you sure as hell are not doing your job. Weeks-on-end with no Bobcat news and this is the crap you come up with. If people have been negative all summer long than why are you just addressing it. Go jump off the Time Warner Arena and kill yourself...clown!

Posted by: moboythunder | Sep 21, 2010 7:23:26 PM

I can't believe people are STILL rating Doris Meow.I will be laughing hard when he continues to suck night in night out,with 1 good game out of every 10.Doris can't start next season he can't.TT is the future.The best scenario,if there is one,with Meow is relegating him to the bench.HOPEFULLY he plays better with our bench.

Posted by: FlipFlops | Sep 21, 2010 11:06:37 PM

I wish I would have read this before today but why all the worry. You look at the teams that got better and ask yourself, are these teams we were better than anyways. The Heat and the Bulls are the only teams that got better. Those two teams made the playoffs last year. Now look at the Cavs (#1 seed last year), Raptors (Fell apart at the end of the year, ATL (team starting to be at the end of their run). Has anyone in the East really gone from a non-playoff team to a contender now. How I see it this is probably the playoff teams this year:

Heat
Bulls
Magic
Celts
Bucks
Bobcats
Hawks
Pacers, Nets, or Wizards.

Posted by: Newt | Sep 22, 2010 8:25:38 AM

BORIS IAW (NO D) cant play D for crap. he needs to be traded so we can get someone who will contribute on both ends of the court. i know diaw is a good passer, dribbler and decent shooter for a big but he is going to hinder tyrus developement unless we go small ALOT.

Posted by: adam | Sep 22, 2010 12:32:42 PM

sign allen iverson

Posted by: point guard | Sep 23, 2010 3:21:27 PM

Lmfao @ anybody thinking the loss of Felton is going to hurt that much. I guess you're all forgetting how Jameer Nelson OWNED him throughout the whole playoff series or how Tyson Chandler missed pretty much half of the season. We are strong at the 2/3/4 spots and weak at the poing and center. (Sound like the Miami Heat to anyone?) But, we still have more than enough talent to get to the 7th seed. People need to realize that we were 3-8 before trading for Jackson and picked up Ratliff and Thomas more than halfway through the season. If that's good enough for 44 wins after a 3-8 start, 44 wins with a training camp together shouldn't be that far out of reach. As long as Jackson, Wallace, and Thomas are healthy, we'll be in the hunt.

Posted by: DocBrown | Sep 24, 2010 10:59:52 AM

http://sports.espn.go.com/nba/news/story?id=5610989

Charlotte part of 4 way trade sending Diaw out and getting Devin Harris in return

Posted by: Clayton | Sep 24, 2010 2:55:02 PM

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