Bobcats Drop Sloppy, Winnable Game To Jazz

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Photo Credit: Melissa Majchrzak/NBAE via Getty Images

The Bobcats were defeated 83-78 by a shorthanded Utah Jazz squad on the road in Salt Lake City on Monday night.  The Cats were led by Stephen Jackson (24 points) and DJ Augustin (20) in the loss and fall to 20-27 overall.

AP Recap |  Box Score

After a day off to recharge in the middle of the road trip, this matchup looked ripe for the taking when Deron Williams was ruled out prior to the game with a wrist injury.

Besides, even with their all-star, Utah had been reeling recently, losing 7 of their last 8.  But the Jazz came out strong with an 11-0 run to start the game, and proceeded to outrebound (49-36) and outmuscle the Cats in the paint.  The Jazz front line of Al Jefferson, Paul Millsap and Andrei Kirilenko all had double doubles: Jefferson 21/11, Millsap 14/12, and Kirilenko 13/11.  Jefferson and Kirilenko each had 3 blocks; Millsap added one.

To contrast, the Bobcats were led by DJ Augustin and Stephen Jackson with 8 rebounds apiece.  Kwame Brown had a miserable night with just 5 points, 4 rebounds, and 5 fouls in 23 minutes.

CJ Miles provided some perimeter scoring for the Jazz off the bench with 20 points; Earl Watson, who started at the point in place of Deron Williams, ended with an inexplicable plus-minus of +26 for the game.

The Bobcats could never establish much flow and shot the ball miserably, finishing at 35.6% from the field.  Nonetheless, they were in the game until the final moments.  Stephen Jackson hit four straight free throws to bring the Cats within one at 79-78 with two minutes left.

But with the Jazz frontline dominating the paint, the Bobcats couldn’t go with their preferred small lineup to finish the game (DJ, Henderson, Jack, Wallace and Diaw) and instead went with Eduardo Najera instead of Henderson.  It’s understandable, as going small would have put Gerald Wallace on Paul Millsap.

But it didn’t work, as the Bobcats couldn’t generate any offense after Jack’s free throws and never scored again AND Millsap grabbed two back-breaking offensive rebounds down the stretch.

Notes

  • If you wanted to put together a reel of games to convince yourself that it might be time to trade Gerald Wallace, add this one to it.  Just didn’t bring anything to the table tonight.
  • In addition to the Jazz 11-o run to start the game, they had another 11-0 run to start the third quarter and a 10-o run to start the fourth.
  • Cardboard Gerald caught Jimmer Fredette, Jimmer Fredette’s girlfriend, and Jimmer Fredette’s girlfriend’s poof in the stands.
  • If you’re looking for a Bobcats highlight, it’s probably Najera’s trip into the courtside seats, as pictured above.  As he got up, he picked up one lady’s crushed, now empty cup and pantomimed ordering her a new drink.  Good enough for a bloopers video.  Oh, and DJ hit a pretty crazy reverse layup that should make the highlights.
  • Next game is Wednesday night as the Cats wrap up this six-game road trip in Detroit against the Pistons — 7:30 PM ET start.  A win will give the Cats a 4-2 road trip as they head into a tough stretch of home games.

-Dr. E

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Effort Questioned in Bobcats’ Loss to Jazz

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Charlotte Bobcats vs Jazz, 12/19/09

Road Shenanigans Infecting Home Play?

Hello all — the Bobcats Baseline crew took the night off to celebrate the holidays, so this is just a rudimentary post to provide a place to comment.

The Bobcats dropped one to the Utah Jazz last night, 110-102, at the Cable Box.  All accounts are that the Bobcats troubling pattern of play in road games was on full display for the home fans last night.  AP recap here, box score here, PopcornMachine.net game flow here.

The pattern goes roughly like this: come out flat, fall behind, no production from Chandler, more laissez-faire from Diaw, turnovers from Felton, Gerald Wallace beasting it to keep hope alive, and a furious charge late in the game that comes up short.

Bonnell’s game story for the Observer is heavy on some critical postgame comments that Gerald Wallace made with regards to the starting “4 and 5″ — ahem, Boris Diaw and Tyson Chandler.  It’s good to see Gerald taking a leadership role like this.  Let’s hope that the comments are inspiring and not divisive.

Or maybe it would be best if they “inspired” the front office to find a trade for a PF that would fit better than Diaw does right now.  How good would the Cats be with a guy like Millsap, Landry, Bass or even D. Lee at the 4?

We won’t have to wait long to see how the team responds to the loss and Gerald’s comments.  Assuming they were able to fly from Charlotte to New York last night or this morning, the Cats will take on the Knicks (again) at MSG tonight at 7:30 PM ET.

-Dr. E

Charlotte Bobcats vs. Jazz 11/14/08

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Victory!

1. Victory!  104-96 over the visiting Jazz.  AP story here, box score here.   I took a few quick iPhone snaps tonight, as opposed to ganking an AP photo.  Maybe I should stick to ganking the AP photos.

2. Thank goodness the Cats were able to pull out the win tonight.  The Jazz were without three of their top four players (Williams, Okur and Kirilenko), so to be unable to take care of business at home would have been pretty embarrassing.  

3. As had been reported, Matt Carroll got the start in Jason Richardson’s place, but Adam Morrison was the major beneficiary, logging 24 minutes and getting 15 points (5-8 FG, 3-5 3PT) to lead the effort from the bench.  With a few more solid games like this, we’ll have to stop singling Adam out and just start expecting it from him (which would be nice, since he was the #3 pick and all).  

Funny moment in the fourth quarter as Morrison had a breakaway off of a scramble for the ball.  Unfortunately, for a slow white guy in the NBA, “breakaway” can quickly become “get caught from behind and have your shit swatted in humiliating fashion.”  Accordingly, Adam looked absolutely terrified heading down the court before finally getting to the rim and doing one of those awkward “ohcrapIdidn’tjumphighenoughtodunkbetterjustlettheballgonow” moves.  It rolled around the rim precariously before finally falling in.  Sue Bird probably would have finished stronger.

4. Felton and Wallace were the other leaders tonight, with 23 and 22 points respectively.  Combined, they shot 20-24 from the free throw line on the night, with many of those coming down the stretch to seal the game.

5. Ryan Hollins, back from the dead tonight!  15 minutes, 5 points, 4 boards and 2 blocks.  Okafor was in foul trouble all night and never really got it in gear.  

6. Speaking of the big guys, it’s nice to see LB saving Nazr Mohammed (DNP-CD again tonight) for our playoff run.  In all seriousness, I imagine that Nazr will be getting some run as soon as Ajinca hits the D-League.  

7. Speaking of the big guys, again: Andre Brown looks more uncomfortable in a suit jacket than Sean May in a health food store.  

8. Only bright spot for the Jazz tonight was Carlos Boozer, who went for 26 points and 15 rebounds and had an absolutely vicious dunk on Hollins in the closing minutes of the game.  Just not enough help around him.

9. Next game: Sunday afternoon at 5:30 at the Cable Box – hosting Dwight Howard and the Magic.

-E 

UPDATE: The dunk mentioned above in item #8 was actually Boozer on Gerald Wallace: