Charlotte Bobcats @ Magic, 11/16/09
Signs of Life?
The Bobcats fall on the road to the Orlando Magic tonight, 97-91, to drop to 3-7. AP recap here, box score here, Bonnell story here. The Cats actually led this one 52-50 at the half off some hot shooting from Boris Diaw and Flip Murray. However, a dismal 16-point quarter put them down 8 heading into the final period, and the Cats just don’t have the firepower to mount a 4th quarter comeback of that magnitude against a team the caliber of the Magicians.
Flip Murray’s 31 points tied a career high for him, and represent the best scoring night of any Bobcat thus far this season. Raymond Felton spent most of the night in foul trouble, and DJ was again ineffective, so Flip played 34 minutes (many while running the point) and filled it up on 13-21 FG, 2-6 3PT. However, Murray missed a chance keep the Bobcats alive and set a new career high when he missed a couple of free throws in the fourth quarter.
Stephen Jackson had a decent debut for the Bobcats; he started, played 45 minutes, and generally acquitted himself pretty well with 13 points and 9 rebounds. However, his shot was not falling (4-14 FG, 1-4 3PT, 4-8 FT) — had a few more of those dropped, we might be talking about a pretty special debut.
One of the real benefits that Jackson provided, and will hopefully continue to provide, doesn’t even show up in his numbers, though. It’s in the numbers of Raymond Felton (6) and Gerald Wallace (5). What are those numbers, you ask? Field goal attempts. With Jackson around, there will be less pressure on Felton and Wallace, two inefficient shooters, to provide scoring.
- Tyson Chandler continues to be disappointing for the Bobcats; got in foul trouble early and only played 24 mins, with 2 points, 4 rebounds. Nazr continued to play well off the bench; but the Bobcats were most fortunate that Gortat was out for the Magic, who thus went small when Dwight Howard was on the bench and allowed the Cats to go small as well.
- No one had a huge night for the Magic — but they put 7 guys in double figures in an impressive team performance.
- No minutes for Gerald Henderson, Derrick Brown or Alexis Ajinca tonight; understandable, as LB saw a chance to steal a win and stuck with the veterans.
- DJ has no confidence out there. 2 points on 1-4 FG in 13 minutes. His poor start to the year is probably the most under-discussed concerning thing about the Bobcats right now.
- At this point (of the night, but also of this Bobcats season) I’m out of dramatic adjectives, but here’s the link for interest: Bonnell reports that Iverson’s camp has “reached out” to Larry Brown in the wake of AI and the Grizzlies agreeing to an annulment. You know what? At this point, why not? Maybe it would be the Bobcats “dancing bears and midget car” moment (thanks, “Bobcat orange?”), but I rather agree with my Baseline compadre, ASChin — while the Bobcats are mortgaging their financial future and risking any remaining bit of community goodwill that was based on having “good guys” on the team in order to get to the playoffs, we might as well go down in a blaze of glory.
- Next game is Wednesday night in Philly to take on the almost-equally disappointing 76ers at 7PM ET. Won’t be live tweeting due to the early start, but will catch up with the DVR and have a post up here late Wednesday night.