NOLA had no luck slowing down Evans and the Kings offense.
After a hot start to the season the New Orleans Hornets (2-2) fall once again, this time 96-80 to the Sacramento Kings (2-3). Offensively this team has looked downright terrible their past two games. After the atrocious shooting effort against Phoenix, the woes continued on in Sacramento as a team they shot 40.4%. What really did the Hornets in were the 19 turnovers commited, and 8 of them by starting point guard Jarrett Jack. Couple that in with the fact as a team they missed all 15 shots taken from behind the arc.
Trevor Ariza was one bright spot leading the team with 17 points on 8-14 shooting. The center duo of Okafor and Kaman continue to suck down rebounds grabbing 12 and 15 respectfully. Emeka had a solid night on the offensive end putting up 13 points on 5-7 from the field, Kaman added 14 points himself but with a less impressive line going 5-13 from the floor. Carl Landry the other Hornet frontcourt player continues to play hard, pulling down 5 offensive rebounds and chipped in 12 points in the losing effort.
Marco Belinelli starting for the injured Eric Gordon at the two spot, was less than impressive. Beli just has not been able to get his shot to drop, only putting up 6 points on 3-12 shooting. That includes a horrific 0 of 7 from three point range, it is more than obvious the Hornets need Gordon back in the lineup. Yet it seems Gordon will also sit out tonight’s game when the team travels to Utah to battle the also struggling Jazz.
At point, Jack was less than impressive as well and downright horrible in the loss. After that awful performance against Phoenix, Jarrett mustered a mere 6 points on 3-11 shooting. He did have 8 assists, but the 8 turnovers overshadowed that. Recently acquired Greivis Vasquez continues to look good as the backup, and with Jack struggling he may get a shot at the starting job in the near future. Vasquez also dished out 8 assists as he continues to look at getting teammates involved and only had 2 turnovers. Not putting up a lot of points, only 6 on 3-9 shooting, but overall he has looked impressive so far in the still young season.
Gustavo Ayon also made his NBA debut last night, coming in late in the game but did not contribute any stats. Trey Johnson also jumped in late and added 4 points. Jason Smith, looked terrible from the field shooting 1-5 and missed all 4 free throw attempts after getting hit in the the eyes. Smith a normally great free throw shooter got brushed in the eyes never seemed to recover from that as he just could not the ball to go through the net.
Former Hornet, Marcus Thornton who was traded to the Kings last season for Carl Landry destroyed New Orleans along with Tyreke Evans scoring a combined total of 52 points. More problems in Sacramento as the young talented center Demarcus Cousins has apparently demanded a trade from the Kings. Cousins is one of the better centers in the league averaging a double-double of 13 ppg and 11.2 rpg. And at 21 there is a lot of potential for Cousins and with the Hornets looking to go younger to build for the future, so there could be a chance of New Orleans making a play for him.
Now since we own the Minnesota Timberwolves pick, I have been watching them pretty close as well rooting against them every game. Last night the Wolves picked up their first victory, defeating the defending champions Dallas Mavericks. Currently Minny sits at 1-3, and will host the Spurs tonight. With every Minnesota loss the better the chances of a top 5 pick for us. With the way we have been playing we may be right there as well, which is not a bad thing with the current crop of talent in the upcoming NBA draft.
Tonight the Gordon-less Hornets will travel onto Utah and take on the also struggling Jazz (1-3). With neither team shooting the ball well, New Orleans will have to rely on their stout defense. The best way the Hornets have of getting the ball to drop is too keep shooting the ball, they will by no means be a top notch offensive team this season so they need to rely on defense to create fast break points and just hope they start going in. I do not expect a much better offensive effort in tonight’s game, I still see them pulling out a close victory. With a strong defensive effort, they should be able to limit a somewhat weak Utah Jazz offense and put up just enough points to squeak out a close win.