Hornets Hype

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Archive for the ‘ Lil Dimes ’ Category

  • So Darren Collison is leaving Vegas? Too bad. Thornton looked like he was forcing a lot of shots without him to penetrate last night. Our team will probably beast on everyone a little less than expected.
  • Quincy Pondexter is quite the multi-tasker, isn’t he? Nice shot, nice aggressiveness, nice muscle, nice energy. He’s put together two straight nice games. Julian Wright should be worried. Right now this kid looks more deserving of his minutes.
  • CON: Brackins pulled down zero rebounds last night. But he did eventually dunk, toward the end of last night’s game. I was so excited to see him in the post I thought I was hallucinating.
  • PRO: Monty Williams, on Brackins’ game: “Playing that many minutes without a rebound is not something that we will put up with.” BWAHA! I like this guy already.
  • Kevin McHale thinks that David West doesn’t have a post game. No wonder Kevin McHale is no longer coaching…
  • Did anyone see Nellie at Friday night’s game? He looked totally drunk or stoned or both.
  • Lawrence Frank is now my new favorite thing on NBA TV. After the game, he insinuated with an entirely straight face that Nellie was drunk, so I know it wasn’t just me who thought that. How’d I miss this guy? He’s much more suited to being on my TV than being with the Nets anyway.
  • I like this Kyle Hines kid. He plays like he’s much bigger than 6-6. Think the Hornets will give him a camp invite? (Don’t know where he would play… he’s a 4. But he’s way undersized. And we already have all these undersized power forwards. But it doesn’t hurt to ask him to camp.)
  • Hornets signed Aaron Gray. Guess that means they don’t need the Dude With the Aaron Gray Hair (Sonderleiter). They already have the real one.
  • I think the people who harp on Thornton’s defense are just parroting stuff Byron Scott used to say and not really watching him. He is both fiesty and fast, plus he crashes the boards with abandon down there among the tall trees. I think 5 out of his 6 rebounds last night were on the defensive end. He’s not as long as some other guys, but he works hard.
  • In fact he outrebounded everyone on the team… this says more about them than about him, however.
  • I did think Lil Buckets was lazy on O last night, however. Every time he tried to involve others, they dropped the ball or something. Lazy or frustrated, couldn’t tell. He took a bazillion poor fadeaway jumpers. Still shot 7-14 though, which is 50% so it can’t be as bad as I remember it being. But those two missed FTs probably lost the game for the Hornets.
  • David Thorpe: “One of my lasting memories of this week will be Marcus Thornton ferociously attacking the rim the way a tiger  goes after a deer. He makes an angry face and blows to the hole.  If he was 6’6, he’d be an all-star.  As it is, he’s a terrific NBA player.” This should be on Thornton’s bulletin board.
  • That Wheeler guy has brown hair on the sides with a yellow stripe on top. @LSUHornet17 described it best when he said, “It’s like a mohawk made purely out of hair dye.” Haha.
  • Hornets had a late lead in both games and somehow managed to lose anyway. #rookiecloserfail
  • I think we need a Summer League Drinking Game. Therefore, when Brackins finally gets a rebound on Tuesday night, let’s all do a shot! If he gets two, do another one! … Don’t worry, you won’t get that shitcanned. Trust me. (If you’re reading this, rook: prove me wrong! Get us all drunk! Do it!)

On Our Hero Chris Paul, a final word:

We’ve all seen the various media reports and various goings-on of the past couple of weeks. Man, I want to think the best of Chris Paul. I want to continue to see him and Drew Brees as New Orleans’ heroes. I want him to play here for a long time, and I want to make trades this year to get some great players alongside him. But… it is really hard for me to feel the same way about a player if he has one foot out the door. Maybe we’re into “It’s not you, it’s me” territory. Maybe that’s my mental block. I don’t have a problem with putting pressure on our front office… they’ve been pretty conservative, although to be fair, at the moment the salary cap won’t really allow them to be anything but.

NOLA isn’t a place that’s going to take kindly to you, though, if you’re gonna flirt with other cities for two years. I’m also a bit disappointed that CP didn’t choose to distance himself from the shitstorm of a backlash that’s hitting LeBron and his crew right now. I still don’t think we should trade him under any circumstances, as long as there’s a chance to win with him. And I don’t believe he will pull a Baron Davis and pretend to be hurt, or any of that nonsense. As I said, I really, really want to think the best of this guy who’s been so great to New Orleans up to this point. But do I have the same unwavering faith in him that I had a month ago? No. It’s like how you can sometimes sense a breakup coming, so you start picking fights and distancing yourself before it happens. I hope Chris Paul has the ability to step away from his friendship from LeBron James, just for a moment, objectively, and see how some of his friend’s behavior in the last two years was inappropriate and inconsiderate. Not the person, the behavior. They’re not the same thing. (Or are they? Are we who we say we are, or are we our choices? Something to think about.)

Anyway, I hope he continues to be the upstanding person and representative for New Orleans we have known him to be. I would never want to lose that Chris Paul.

There are two reasons I’m excited about Summer League. The first is it doesn’t involve things not restricted to but including anonymous sources, league sources, World Wide Wes, trade rumors, free agency, Chris Paul hating New Orleans, or LeBron. What a dull week. Seriously. You’re fooling yourselves if you think greatness is made in business transactions. Greatness is made on the court. Which brings us to the second reason: Marcus Buckets Thornton and Darren Collison! Do you realize most of the other top rookies (Tyreke Evans, Stephen Curry) from last year aren’t playing? Therefore we can expect Lil Buckets, Lil Dimes & Co. to put a world of beatdown and beastliness on all the other teams in Vegas.

This year, probably thanks to having two of the top 5 rookies in the league, the Hornets are going to be televised on NBA TV for four out of their five Vegas games. This is, apparently, some sort of record for us and also means I’ll be able to watch on a screen big enough to actually see the numbers on the uniforms, rather than in an itty bitty low-res window on my computer. Yay?

The Hornets summer league roster is generally underwhelming besides Our Favorite Rookie Heroes, but you should note that Craig Brackins and Quincy Pondexter are going to be added to the roster July 8th. I’m sure they’re already there with the rest of the team, or headed there, but the team isn’t allowed to officially talk about it because trades and signings don’t become official till then. Here’s a mini-preview of who the Baby Buzz will be up against. I broke it down into 3 categories: Actual People You’ve Heard Of, Draft Picks, and Former Rookies Who Are Too Cool For School Unlike Our Rookies Who Will Feast Upon Your Team’s Flesh in Your Absence Ha Ha Suckersss.

HORNETS 2009 NBA SUMMER LEAGUE SCHEDULE
Friday, July 9, vs. Golden State, 7 p.m. (9 p.m. Central), NBA TV

Actual People You’ve Heard Of: Reggie Williams (that kid from the D-League who destroyed us in one of the most infuriatingly stupid Don Nelson-esque comebacks of all time last season), Anthony Randolph, Brandan Wright. Draft Pick: Ekpe Udoh. Not On the Roster: Stephen Curry.

Sunday, July 11, vs. Miami, 7 p.m. (9 p.m. Central), NBA TV

Actual People You’ve Heard Of: Jon Scheyer (that kid from Duke who makes really douchey faces), Michael Beasley (I’ve seen like 2 sites saying he’s on the roster and 2 saying he’s not, so I have no idea). Draft Pick: Dexter Pittman, Jarvis Varnado, Da’Sean Butler (all 2nd round). Not On the Roster: Mario Chalmers. Fun fact: Chalmers and Beasley are actually the ONLY two players currently on the Heat roster. I am not making this up. Have fun with that, guys.

Tuesday, July 13, vs. Portland, 7 p.m. (9 p.m. Central), NBA TV

Actual People You’ve Heard Of: Dante Cunningham, Jeff Pendergraph. Draft Pick: Luke Babbit, Armon Johnson. Not on the Roster: Monty Williams will not be coaching. ‘Cause he don’t work there no more.

Friday, July 16, vs. Washington, 5 p.m. (7 p.m. Central), NBA TV

Actual People You’ve Heard Of: Sun Yue, JaVale McGee, Jon Scheyer (shut up, no he’s not, he’s playing for Miami. Update your shit, Wizards internet. Haha). Draft Pick: John Wall. El Numero Uno gets a nice challenge here going up against DC. Not on the Roster: I don’t even know who’s on the Wizards anymore.

Saturday, July 17, vs. Toronto, 3:30 p.m. (5:30 p.m. Central)

Actual People You’ve Heard Of: Bobby Brown (BOBBY!!!), Sonny Weems, DeMar DeRozan, Joey Dorsey. Draft Pick: Ed Davis, Solomon Alabi. Not on the Roster: I think all the Raptors young players are here. Lots of vets could equal a challenge for our squad. This game is the only one not on NBA TV, but never fear, I shall post the address of the illegal feed when I find it.

Let the countdown begin!

Hornets.com posted another rookie video. You know I love these. This one features Darren Collison, as he goes about his daily rookie duties at a Westbank Krispy Kreme. The highlights:

  • CP gets on his case if the donuts aren’t hot
  • “Marcus, he’s the main one that be eating the donuts and he’s supposed to be on my side” (HA!)
  • On days they fly out, they have to get Popeyes for David West, who eats six biscuits by himself

Darren Collison, who finished 4th in voting for Rookie of the Year, made the All-Rookie first team, and Marcus Thornton made the 2nd team. I’m super psyched that the coaches who were voting seem to have gone the best player route, as opposed to the “we need to fill all 5 positions!” route. The beneficiary of this was Lil Dimes, who ended up on the first team where he belonged, along with the other three star rookie point guards. And be assured, I WAS about to kick ass, take names, and flip into vigilante justice attack mode if Thornton got left off the teams, as I was afraid he might be.

But.

While a lot of people are gonna be like, “Second Team is great for a second rounder who got picked at #43, is an undersized 2 guard, and was in a suit to start the year!” I am extremely wary of going down that path. None of those things are Marcus’ fault. None of those things were ever fair to begin with. None of them are indicative of his real talent level. They are indicative of a lot of things some very wrong people thought about him several months ago. I agree 100% with everything Ryan Schwan wrote in this post today on Buckets’ advanced stats and talent.

It was what it was, but none of it was ever fair. Marcus Thornton will do well to remember that. And use it.

This is a gratuitous photograph of Lil Buckets and Lil Dimes eating crawfish. Or rather, of Buckets sucking away on his crawfish like a Louisiana native while Dimes gives his crawfish a very focused "what is this small red creature and how do I take it apart?" look.

Closing That Door

By on April 12, 2010

I don’t feel super pumped about last night’s blowout win over the T-Wolves to close out the Hornets’ home schedule, but I don’t feel bad about it either. They didn’t lose. They didn’t play down to a terrible team. They didn’t blow a lead. They managed to pull themselves together enough to do the right thing for the fans.

Where are we going? Where have we been?

Byron Scott is gone. Rasual Butler, Tyson Chandler, Devin Brown, and Hilton Armstrong are gone. The Hornets overcame a terrible start to give us a scrappy, fun January and February, only to lose the franchise player to what pretty much ended up being a season-ending injury. (Oh, if it weren’t for that one errant pass and that one unfortunately positioned cameraman! What might have been!) Once they realized they were missing the playoffs, you could see the fire sort of go out of them, as we watched the inevitable slide toward the end of the season.

George Shinn is reportedly in the midst of selling the team to (local! richer!) minority partner Gary Chouest. This may mean big front office changes are on the way, heading into the offseason. This may mean the end, finally, of those pesky rumors we read every five minutes about how cheap the team is and how they’re going to move. We might have seen the last of Jeff Bower, as both coach and GM. The Hornets had one of the best drafts in the NBA in 2009. I discovered a new favorite player. We’ll most likely have the 11th pick in June.  Lots of stuff went down this season. It will continue to go down as we head into the draft and the summer.

I have not given my opinion on this blog about the upcoming sale of the team, but anyone who’s read Hornets Hype long enough can guess what it is easily enough. From the beginning, we’ve been about exactly two things: 1) Watching this team rise, under the leadership of the basketball magician Chris Paul, and 2) Keeping the team in New Orleans. Period. And I just don’t see how Shinn selling the team is anything but great news, when it comes to those two things we  care about the most. Chouest is local.  He’s got deeper pockets than Shinn; he’s got money coming from other places and therefore more resources. He doesn’t just want a basketball team– he wants a basketball team in New Orleans.

Looking back on the season, I realize I had more fun watching this year than I did in 2008-09, even though the team won 14 less games. So I can’t really say it was all a waste. It wouldn’t be true. Last night before tipoff, the rookies took the court to address the crowd (Lil Buckets is not the best public speaker– he not only looked 10 times more nervous than he’s ever looked while playing, but he hilariously started off his speech with, “Yeaaahh, so I know we didn’t have a real good season, but… “). I can’t think of anything more fitting– more than any other players on the team, this was their season. Watching Marcus Thornton go from wearing a suit to being a 20 PPG starter was worth the price of admission. Add in Collison’s masterful turn in substituting for the injured Chris Paul, and these two were the reason to watch. And you know what? I’m also going to shout out David West here, who, in case you didn’t notice, turned it on in the last two months of the season and particularly outdid himself in terms of assists, passing better this spring than he has in his entire career.

On a personal note, the Hype is doing the house-buying thing, so that’s why I haven’t been around much in the last couple weeks. Of course, the Hornets haven’t been around much in the last couple weeks either… It is what it is. We’ll probably have something to say about the playoffs. We’ll definitely have stuff to say about the draft. We’ll be around.

I don’t know. I just feel very strongly that all is not lost. I feel like big things are around the corner.

We’ll be here, waiting.

Chris Paul Brings Da Ruckus

By on March 22, 2010

[Intro: Shogun Stern]

Hornets shadowboxing and the Chris Paul ball style
If what you say is true, the Hornets and Chris Paul could be dangerous

[Intro: Bower Robotnik]

Do you think Big D’s Carlisle-style can defeat us?
En garde, We’ll let them try our Hornets’ style

[Chorus: Buckets and Dimes da Fleur de Bee]

Bring da motherfuckin’ ruckus
Bring da motherfuckin’ ruckus
Bring da mother, bring da motherfuckin’ ruckus
Bring da motherfuckin’ ruckus

[Verse: CP3]
Grief Merchant, catch the blast of my hype verse
Speed bursts, I leave ‘em in a hearse, I’ve done worse
I come rough, tough like basketball leather
Make your head rush and ankle snap, not so clever
Aw shit, Chris Paul clan spark the comeback
Over Big-D, quick cross-over like Magic,
Causin’ terror, my stare’ll damage your whole line-up
J-Kidd got locked the fuck up and left tryin’ to flop
Hornets style, hazardous ’cause we wreck this dangerous
I score points at this like Drew Brees and Reggie Bush.

[Verse: D-West]

I watch my back like I’m locked down
Hardcore bumpin’ low, watch me pick and roll and tear it down
A literate-type balla, double-double, no doubt
You watch all those corny Mavs’ playas fold
Yeah, they flop and all that, earnin’ stats,
But yo, my clan’s rollin’ like thirteen Killa Bees
Now your act contrived, I guess it makes sense
Chris Paul, his play’s sweeeeeeeeeeet, represent
I wait for Nowtiski to act up
Now I got him backed up; slap to his face now, react, what?
Meanwhile that’s one in the basket
Chris Paul tasked it, and I got 36 ways to jack it.

[Chorus: Buckets and Dimes da Fleur de Bee]

Bring da motherfuckin’ ruckus
Bring da motherfuckin’ ruckus
Bring da mother, bring da motherfuckin’ ruckus
Bring da motherfuckin’ ruckus

[Verse: Peja 13]

I rip shots hardcore like porno-flick bitches
Rollin’ with a team of ballas with mad riches
Check it, my method on the ballcourt’s bangin’
Hornets floor moves leave your mouthpiece hangin’
Bust this, I’m shootin’ like Seagal in Lawman, can’t miss,
The roughness, yes, the rudeness and ruckus
Redrum, I athletically assault with the hot hand
Murder-one – my style shot your knot like a machine-gun
I’m hectic, I wreck it with the quickness,
Pass the rock, and da competition get blown
By this nasty-ass playa – Lil’ Buckets will own you,
Chargin’ like a bull and bringin’ the ruckus
He be bad, ragin’ up the floor with the fab, no crab
Dribble drive, I scream on your ass: “bring it on…”

[Chorus: Buckets and Dimes da Fleur de Bee]

Bring da motherfuckin’ ruckus
Bring da motherfuckin’ ruckus
Bring da mother, bring da motherfuckin’ ruckus
Bring da motherfuckin’ ruckus

[Verse: Oak]
Yo, I’m more rugged than my Bobcats roots
Our new recruits and me fuckin’ up invading troops
I break loops and trample fools while I stomp
A mudhole in that ass, cause I’m straight out the swamp,
Creepin’ up on Nola, now it’s Ladies Night for us
And my Hornets’ style is mad fuckin’ dangerous
More deadly than the stroke of an axe
Choppin’ through outstretched arms, *swish*
Givin’ bystanders heart-attack harm
Playas try to flip, tell me who is at the 5, him?
I blow up his fuckin’ zone, make it a vicious act of terrorism
You wanna bring it, so fuck it
Come on and bring the ruckus
I provoke players to make buckets
I’m makin’ ‘em wet, but I ain’t sweatin’ my fame
Who’s sellin’ gain, I’m dishin’ out a deadly game
It’s not the Mavericks, it’s the Chris Paul hip-hop roulette
Slip up and get played like a sucka at the net.

[Chorus: Buckets and Dimes da Fleur de Bee]

Bring da motherfuckin’ ruckus
Bring da motherfuckin’ ruckus
Bring da mother, bring da motherfuckin’ ruckus
Bring da motherfuckin’ ruckus

[Outro: Aaron the Incredible Bulk]

So bring it on…
So bring it on…
So bring it on…
Punk ballas.

This time the kids go to LSU to check out Marcus Thornton’s old stomping grounds. I think my personal highlight is when the 6-year-old kid runs up to the tiger fence and yells, “Hey kitty kitty!” and both rookies run away. Or when Buckets makes a little tiger noise. You decide for me.

As always, we thank the Hornets for dragging their rookies out and recording this stuff for our entertainment. In case you missed the previous installment, in which Darren and Marcus visit a California Pizza Kitchen UCLA, it’s here.

In person, this looked like he was hugging him around the waist

In person, this looked like he was hugging him around the waist. It was heart-warming and stuff.

Besides this picture.

  • Aaron “BIG NASTY” Gray and his random yet masterful D-ing up of Dwight Howard in the Hornets win over the Magic on Friday
  • The Hornets giving away a prize a day this month, which you’re eligible for if you renew your season tickets (oh all right, fine, the reason this is on this list is because I won something…)
  • Marcus Thornton’s game-icing three on Friday. Everyone had already risen to their feet before he took the shot. It was a moment! It was fun!
  • D West’s 40-10 game. Mr. West is in the building! (for people who don’t come to home games, this is the sound clip that plays after every D West bucket… this is its first season. At first I didn’t like it but it’s sort of grown on me. His prior clip was “Wake up, Mr. West-est-est!” Good thing we have Kanye around to provide D West with all his nice beats.)
  • Darren Collison’s last 5 games: 24.2 pts/7.6 ast in 43 minutes (43! Oof… CP! Come back!)
  • Marcus Thornton’s last 5 games: 22.6 pts/4.8 reb/shooting 49% from the field (seriously) and 43% from three in 32 minutes. Can we please please please put more emphasis on per minutes stats instead of points per game? The Buckets Monster is crazy good at what he does (get buckets) and his stats still look like crap from all those games early in the year when he got 5 minutes of garbage time. Boo.
  • Crazy comebacks! This team doesn’t die.
  • Myself and mW went to a Hornets season ticketholder dinner on Thursday and Jeff Bower told us that CP is “one to three weeks” away from returning. He’s shooting and riding the bike right now and progressing well in his therapy. Chris Paul himself, when interviewed by ESPN last night, said he doesn’t plan to come back until he’s “110%, because of the style of ball I play.” Let’s hope he’s smart about this!
  • THE MARDI GRAS BABY IS GONE! It wasn’t at the game Friday.
  • Last night I had a totally weird dream that was probably the result of playing Mass Effect 2 all afternoon and then watching basketball: I dreamed that, while scanning a planet, we unlocked an upgrade that would turn Darren Collison into Chris Paul. Now I’m all fascinated by what kind of an upgrade that would be… “Sticky Gloves — your Shepard holds onto the ball better for 30% less turnovers.” “Prothean Visor– plus 15% to court vision.” “Mental Quickness Implant– you are now a veteran, working the refs in a craftier manner for a 10% free throw bonus to your entire team.” Oh, the possibilities! (Wow, I need to stop gaming… just kidding, no I don’t…)

My non-favorite thing about this week/weekend was the losing. Boo losing. It ruins everyone’s fun. Let’s not do it anymore.

What We Believe In

By on January 26, 2010

Introducing... your new Hornets backcourt

Introducing... your new Hornets backcourt

Last night was huge for TEAM THORNTON. Huge. Hornets Hype’s favorite rookie (Can we make him our mascot? We could put him in the banner… would that be weird? No, OK. It would) came crashing out of the gates in his first NBA start, putting up 9 points in the first 5 minutes of the first quarter. He would quiet down after that, finishing with 19 on 8-12 shooting, but he and Darren Collison, in that crazy fast three-headed guard lineup that sometimes works and sometimes doesn’t, played a huge part in 10-1 run the Hornets went on in the last three minutes to squeak out yet another close game over the Blazers.

Highlights of Lil Buckets’ big debut night included a sick alley-oop from Chris Paul and a flagrant 1 foul when he elbowed Rudy Fernandez while fighting through a screen (whoops). Portland fans, feel free to come call me a Dusche Bagel, but he totally Euro-flopped. He whipped his head back and dropped like a rock, even though the replay showed Marcus’ elbow never even touched his chin. (Not the first elbow, the second one. Leading with the elbow into the chest was a foul, though flagrant is a stretch.) But enough on the foul because it didn’t end up being an issue; it was a solid debut and my favorite part of the night was the big smile on Thornton’s face when CST interviewed him postgame. Or maybe it was the rare smile on Chris Paul’s.

These close games, wow. WOW. When was the last time the Hornets were in a game that didn’t come down to the very last possession? (I checked. It was when they lost to the Spurs five games ago. Before that it was the Clippers win. People, that’s only TWO games out of the 14 they’ve played in January that weren’t close. And neither of them were by more than 8 points either. Between this team and the Saints the other night, I’m going to develop weird hand tremors and a heart condition.)  But you know what? Don’t look now, but this team has become fun to watch. They’re coming out scrappy, and they’ve fashioned themselves into ice cold closers. With the West as crazy as it is– the Hornets are currently in a three-way tie for 9th place but are only 2 games out of 4th– they’re going to need these close games.

And finally. Chris Paul.

You know, I was going to elaborate, but what’s the point? Is there a verb that even describes what Chris Paul did last night? Or is he himself the verb? Yes. That’s what we’ll go with: The Blazers were Chris Pauled.

UPDATE: Lil Buckets shoutout on The Basketball Jones today! It’s at the very end after the Whoa Boy (which– I’m just gonna ruin it for you– is Chris Paul).

Sorry, guys. It won’t happen again.

Things You Knew Were Possible All Along

Things You Knew Were Possible All Along

Best in the West? … Down.

Best in the East (and, in fact, the NBA)? … Down.

Who wants next?