Thursday, October 18, 2007

New Orleans Hornets

New Orleans Hornets season preview

Projected starting line-up

G Chris Paul
G Morris Peterson
F Peja Stojakovic
F David West
C Tyson Chandler

Bobby Jackson
Rasual Butler
Julian Wright

Last year
You know what I think? I think playing in the Western conference is tough. Sure, the East is looking better this year, but the West is still the best. And for a young team trying to make some waves in the West, having the majority of your starting line-up go down with injuries is not going to help you make that move into the playoffs. Peja Stojakovic went down for pretty much the year, although it's hard to feel bad for N.O. for this one as everyone knew that he was an injury risk when they signed him. I can though feel bad for losing David West to some odd arm injury, as well as Chris Paul to an ankle injury. These things happen, but for these things to happen to three starters pretty much makes the season a write-off. But give credit where credit is due, this team kept fighting. Tyson Chandler took a step up in the second half of the season, Rasual Butler added some points...if this team was in the East, even with the injuries, they would have made the playoffs. It sure must be tough playing in that Western Conference.

Off Season
Drafted Julian Wright
Drafted Adam Haluska
Resigned Jannero Pargo
Signed Morris Peterson

Julian Wright is an athletic 6'8 forward who could see valuable time this season if Peja goes down again. Mo Pete, of course, is going to be another strong shooter on the court for the Hornets. Having Chris Paul drive and kick to ether Peterson or Peja must be a nice idea for the fans of the Hornets, but I will say that both shooters can be streaky. And Peterson got away from the slashing last season with the Raps.

Obviously this team is expecting playoffs. They made moves two off-seasons in a row with that goal in mind, and they very well might have made it to the dance last year if even just Chris Paul stayed healthy. But he didn't, nor did West and Peja, so the Hornets watched from the sidelines. This upcoming season, they hope health won't be an issue, but they also better hope that a loud home crowd was not one of the ingredients for there success last year. This team will be back in New Orleans full time, so the crowd support of Oklahoma will be gone, and replaced with the smaller crowds that they were attracting in N.O. before Katrina. Maybe the support has changed in the 2 years, but we will see. Regardless, having a rowdy fan base at home can only help. Ask Charlotte what it's like to have a non existent fan base.
I would not put the whole season on Peja's shoulders, but he does need to regain some of his all-star form he had with the Kings a few seasons ago. The Hornets have the strong nucelous with Paul, West and Chandler, so if Peja can add some of that all-star game, and Mo-Pete can supply some of that 2005-2006 game he had, there is no reason to think that this team can't make the playoffs.

What to watch for
1) Peja - If he stays healthy and plays well, this team can take that next step
2) Chris Paul - He watched Deron Williams step up in Utah. That has to motivated Paul to do the same.
3) New Orleans - How will the fan support be now that the team is back home?

I tell you, I really wish I could predict playoffs. But I can't. I think they will be battling for it, just like last year. But in the battle vs the Lakers/Nuggets/Warriors, I gotta make the Hornets the odd man out. Maybe it's the experience thing, I don't know, but my gut tells me that those other 3 teams are going to make it in. I will say this though, I like the Hornets and I hope I am wrong.

Between 39 and 43 wins this season with a 9th place finish in the West.

1 comment:

breatnyS said...

Good defense by the New Orleans Hornets drama boys, if only we could patch up the difference, this will be a New Orleans good season. They are running, switching in defense, rebounding see those efforts. We don't have yet the Hornets team down.

I which I could see some Hornets games live. I was looking for tickets all the good seats on ticketmaster were taken I had to check broker. And man you don’t want to do that especially for the New Orleans Hornets. Thanks god there sites like Ticketwood which work as comparators here is the site
Hornets Tickets

I like slam dunks that take me to the hoop my favorite play is the ally-hoop,
I like the pic n roll,i like the given goal its basketball yo, yo lets go!
Go Hornets Go!!!