Archive for April, 2008
Yesterday we got TrueHooped. (Since I was home from work sick, that was a fun activity for my afternoon… just reloading the page and watching the traffic double, then triple.) Which is kind of the be-all and end-all of NBA blogging. The good news was that the site dealt with the extra traffic smoothly, despite my cheapskate ass hosting three domains on one account. It was a good day all around.
And then the Hornets made it better.
Could you have scripted a better first playoff series for Chris Paul? Old Guard vs. New Upstarts. Falling Back vs. Rising Up. And David West with another 25-point “Oh What? You Thought I Was the Fluke All Star?” night. (As my 7th grade class would say, “That’s cold.”) And no one but Hornets fans could have predicted how Jannero Pargo has gone off in this series. In fact, most media experts predicted that #7 seed Dallas would win the series, with virtually no one saying the Hornets in less than 7 games.
Honestly, I saw this happening. Not, you understand, as a definite, but as a probability I could see unfolding. “Seriously?” I thought. “If the Hornets win this series, it won’t be in 7.” I think, realistically, this series was over after Game One. Yeah, yeah, yeah, “you say that now,” but think about it. It was how the team came out after the half, down 12 points. And as they played, as Chris Paul dismantled the Mavs and took the game over, it was like watching a team realize they belong. And once you’ve got that, you don’t let it go.
If you’ve watched this team all season, you know they were capable, young, and hungry. But the thing is, most people haven’t seen this team. Until last week, the Hornets had only had 5 or 6 nationally televised games.
Well, you’ve seen them now. Get used to it.
Get used to the names. Get used to the faces. These are the faces you’ll be seeing over and over again for the next five years.
Has there ever been a franchise that’s been a complete afterthought, draft one player and then all of a sudden they are a powerhouse. Chris Paul is (insert over the top praise). The Hornets season has been a smashing success. No matter what happens from here on out. The worst thing that can happen to them is they learn hard lessons. And that’s not even a bad thing.
“It’s not a blog. It’s a movement.” That’s what we here at HornetsHype like to say. Well, the movement has picked up a lot of strength. It seems as if our goals–and the team’s goals– are being accomplished every day. But I’m not going to stop blogging.
And the Hornets aren’t going to stop playing.
New Orleans Hornets vs. San Antonio Spurs. Game One. Saturday, May 2, 2008. 9 PM.
Higher and Higher.
You might say the fans were slow to embrace the Hornets. You may say the Hornets organization had a lot to make up for after Oklahoma City. But as we stepped out of the arena after the Hornets’ 99-94 series clinching win, the first thing that greeted us was the sound of a brass band… and a big crowd gathering for a second line, dancing and waving towels around. I thought, “You got something right.”
I love New Orleans. I love the Hornets.
Quote of the Night: “But Bonzi can’t be without his headband. He’ll lose his ninja powers!”
The lady next to mW: “Um, I think you might need to go to anger management after this game.”
mW: “No, I’ll be fine if we win.”
Chant of the Night: So there was a fan in 118 who had a sign that said “Stop the Flop” and had a picture of a stop sign and a #41 blue jersey. They put it up on the jumbotron just as Dirk was shooting free throws after a particularly flailing flop, and the crowd just picked it up and ran with it. “STOP THE FLOP! STOP THE FLOP!” Awesome.
OK, so Sunday night on the postgame press conference, Chris Paul said he wants to see the arena in GOLD.
This is gonna be one of those moments when I’m going to bitch about the Hornets organization. I love ’em, but… remember how I said we needed to organize the fans better? This is a prime example. OK, scratch that. Except the part about loving the Hornets. See the bottom of the post for an explanation.
Because the players said they wanted gold. Tyson just said it again on his blog today. And CP3’s quote was in the paper, but people might have missed that. Yet… the giveaway tonight is thunderstix. Now I’m not saying it’s reasonable to get 20,000 t-shirts printed on short notice because the players want gold and not teal, but… you know, they could have sent around an email or posted something on the site telling people definitively what to wear. Complicating the issue is the fact that the “Fan Up New Orleans!” shirts are teal. And the previous giveaway was black. And prior to that, white. See the problem? People are not gonna wear the gold gear if they don’t have any (unless you want to see a sea of LSU), and people are not gonna wear a solid color at all unless it’s splashed all over town that they’re supposed to. I think whenever they do t-shirts they should put them on the seats so people realize they have to put one on.
So. Will the fans pull this together to look impressive tonight?
I’m gonna go with, “Ha. No.”
At least we can yell.
Update: I’m told (check out the comments) that CP surprised everyone with that remark, and the staff was scrambling around looking for 18,000 gold shirts on short notice. So… I apologize for the criticism. At least they tried! SO. What to wear? I’m going to wear my teal TC #6 jersey over yellow, and call it a compromise.
First off, this short video feature from TNT, which interviews several New Orleanians about the team. It’s only 1:50, so you should go watch it, if only to see the Hornets doing their get-psyched-up dance in the hallway of the arena. I love how Julian Wright is right in the middle, because you know when there’s any kind of crazy dance going on, JuJu is all over that.
Second, there’s some pretty random Hornets stuff on YouTube. I’ve picked you a real gem to start off with today. This takes place in the Staples Center locker room when the Hornets played at the Lakers last fall and features Jannero Pargo rocking a beater and a tie (Ely: “You should see the tie he has on. It matches nothing he has on now”), and Melvin Ely trying to explain Justin Timberlake’s Dick in a Box without actually saying any dirty words.
We love seeing Hornets getting major award props for the amazing 56-26 season they’ve put together! (Yup, this is definitely official, it just came on Sportscenter as I was typing.)
ESPN has been glued to the HornetsHype $#*t List since its inception three months ago. Why? Oh, you know, various offenses, like the rampant Kobe hype that took over the month of February, the lack of Hornets content on the air, and general lack of belief in the movement.
But today I took them off. For whatever reason (and let’s be honest, that reason is probably slightly under 6 feet tall and starts with a C), they appear to have drunk the Kool Aid and are giving the Hornets regular coverage. Good coverage too. Oh, and I have to recognize Henry Abbott who writes TrueHoop, because he’s never been a hater. (In fact, here he is today on the superflyness that is Julian Wright.)
Yahoo’s Ball Don’t Lie thinks Kidd should be suspended for his flagrant foul on Jannero Pargo (below). What do I think? I think Pargo’s lucky he has damn good reflexes, or he could have broken his neck. That looked flat-out terrifying, before they showed the replay and I realized he hadn’t actually hit his head. But, for the purposes of the Hornets, I don’t care if Kidd’s suspended or not. Pargo wasn’t hurt, and he bounced back up, even having the presence of mind to calm JuJu (who looked like he was about to hit any Mav within two feet) down and pull him away.
It’s not like the Mavs would really miss Kidd’s 3 points anyway…
Bonus!Hype 1: I guess my mind hasn’t taken up residence in the gutter yet today, because I didn’t notice anything funny about the David West photo at the top of ESPN… but apparently other people did. Haha…
Bonus!Hype 2: If you go over to SLAM Online, today’s playoff wrapup has the headline “Wake Up Mr. West!” Except they’re referring to Delonte West’s big tiebreaker for Cleveland. Oh, see now, that’s not going to fly. Sound bite-stealing wannabe D. Wests will not be tolerated on this blog.
By ticktock6 on April 27, 2008
I could watch that again and again.
Oh, and the Hornets win 97-84 to take the 3-1 series lead.
HUGE game. HUGE win in Dallas.
Goodbye, Jason Kidd. We might not be seeing you again.
How did the Hornets overcome the double Kiss of Death that was Dallas’ arena and the Hornets watch party? They made a few superstitious changes of their own, attempting to counteract the heaps of bad karma… by busting out the yellow jerseys. Good idea, guys.
And a good night.
By ticktock6 on April 27, 2008
Stop having them.
No, really. It’s the playoffs. This stuff counts now. The Hornets marketing people need to take a serious look at what they might be doing to the team. As a refresher, let’s take a look at the Hornets’ record this season for Official Watch Parties:
2/23 @ San Antonio… L 89-98
3/16 @ Detroit… L 84-105
3/28 @ Boston… L 92-112
4/11 @ LA… L 104-107
4/25 @ Dallas… L 87-97
So not only do the Hornets have to contend tonight with their record of 0-14 in Dallas’ arena over the last 10 years, they also have to deal with the 0-5 Kiss of Death that is the officially sponsored watch party. Thanks a lot, guys. On Friday I seriously wanted to tackle Brittany, wrestle the mike away from her, and yell, “NO! The watch party for Sunday will NOT be here at Gordon Biersch! It is cancelled! Stay away! GO HOME PEOPLE, GO HOME!”
Now, you haters out there might be saying, “Well, Ticktock, those five games are against quality playoff teams. In fact, with the exception of Dallas, none of those teams finished lower than a #3 seed.”
Whatever. I know better. It’s the Watch Party of Doom. You’ll notice that the Hornets have beaten four out of five of those teams on other nights (the exception is the 0-for against the Pistons this year). The Hornets have even won road games against two of those teams. Shit, they only lost 15 road games this season.
So next you might be saying, “Well, if you feel that way, then don’t go.” But see, that’s the thing. It doesn’t matter if I don’t go. I’ve only gone to two. Who attends is not the issue. Also not the issue is the location of the party. The losses have taken place three times at Bruno’s, twice in Covington, and once at G.B. It’s the very existence of the party that causes the Hornets to lose.
For the sake of the series, I hope the Hornets come out firing tonight. That’s a lot of baggage, but I hope they can overcome.
We, for the record, will not be going.