Teej chats with SNY’s TheKnicksBlog.com Radio host Anthony “Rice Balls” Donahue about the upcoming home and home with the Knicks, Raymond Felton and Isaiah Thomas. Follow Anthony at TKB Radio on theknicksblog.com or on twitter @AnthonyMSG.
SteveMorrison15 has done it again. The Adam Morrison Comic#5 has arrived… And it is spectacular! Take a look at a few snippets below
View the full comic HERE
SteveMorrison15 is hard at work on the next episode of the Adam Morrison comic and from what I hear, it will be epic!
The comic will be released right here on BobcatsPlanet, so stay tuned it is guaranteed to be hilarious
As a fan it hurts, but having your team lose in the playoffs should hurt.
The Bobcats gave it everything that they had, but in this game as well as the rest of the series against the Orlando Magic, they were simply outmatched. The Bobcats managed to find a way to contain Dwight Howard in all 4 games which is an amazing feat, but they simply had no answer for Jameer Nelson and the horde of three point shooters that the Magic pounded them with game after game.
There were many lessons learned and questions raised during this series and I’m sure that we’ll be discussing all of these in great detail on the blog and in the forums. A few to touch on briefly are.
- The Larry Brown situation. will he be back, or is he off to Philly’s front office?
- If LB leaves, then who will his replacement be?
- Raymond Felton. Will he be re-signed this summer or will they let him go? Is he the PG that is capable of leading this team to the next level.
- Speaking of point guards, CP3 was seen at the Bobats game on Saturday (He and Jordan are tight). The Hornets are in the process of selling their team, so they may go into “shedding salary” mode, they have an inexpensive young PG in Darren Collison, so maybe… just maybe they decide its time to deal CP3. Wishful thinking?
- Tyrus Thomas. In my opinion he absolutely must be signed, sealed and delivered this summer. His 21 points and 9 boards along with his stellar defense is just a taste of what he could give us next season if he comes back and is given starting PF minutes.
- And speaking of starting Power Forwards. What do we do with Boris Diaw? He has been absent many times during the regular season and was a no-show in the playoffs.
- The rookies. Can Gerald Henderson and Derrick Brown develop over the summer to the point where LB trusts them with relevant minutes?
- DJ Augustin. If Ray doesn’t come back, Is he capable of running the show?
- Alexis Ajinca. With Lexi, I have no idea what to expect.
As you can see there are many decisions to be made that are ahead of the Bobcats this summer.
Even with all of these questions ahead of us and the far too abrupt end to the playoffs, I would like to say that we as Bobcats fans are extremely proud of the progress that the team has made this season under Larry Brown. This team has come a long way from the days of Jeff McInnis, Primoz Brezec and empty arenas and we as Bobcats fans are thankful for that.
In baseball, there’s a man named Jack McKeon. He’s known in baseball circles as “Trader Jack.” He’s a retired manager who is the oldest manager to win a World Series (2003 with the Florida Marlins). He managed 5 different teams for 15 seasons over a period of 32 years; 9 years he spent as the GM of the San Diego Padres. But what does all this have to do with the Bobcats, besides McKeon’s link to the Carolinas (he graduated from Elon and still lives there)? Well, Trader Jack is very similar to Michael Jordan.
Now, anyone who knows baseball knows that Trader Jack’s personality is more like Bobcats coach Larry Brown. Both are journeymen, tend to wear on players, and demand trades like they do a change of clothes. But McKeon has more in common with MJ. You see, both had bad starts by most measures – Jordan’s in Washington and McKeon’s in Kansas City with the Royals. But when you look deeper, you see they weren’t as bad as originally thought. McKeon managed the Royals and A’s in his first two jobs, but was unable to have much success. However, after the Royals fired him, the team he’d put into place made the playoffs 4 of the next 5 seasons. The A’s he managed were mostly intact when they made the ALCS a few years later. Jordan as GM in Washington moved a multitude of bad contracts that were hampering the Wizards flexibility and gave them lots of cap space by the time he was relieved of his job. This allowed the Wizards to form a core in Gilbert Arenas, Caron Butler, and Antawn Jamison that made the playoffs multiple times. But they also bear similarities in how their next jobs went. McKeon took over as GM of the Padres and promptly built a winner: the team made the World Series in his 4th season on the job. He drafted Hall of Famer Tony Gwynn and stars John Kruk and Andy Benes, and also signed stars Benito Santiago and Roberto Alomar as amatuers. He brought in veteran star Steve Garvey and Hall of Famer Rich “Goose” Gossage. Jordan has been on the job for nearly four years now, and has drafted young talent in Ryan Hollins, Jared Dudley (both since traded), DJ Augustin, Gerald Henderson and Derrick Brown. He’s signed diamond in the rough Stevie Graham, and traded for star Stephen Jackson and veterans Theo Ratliff, Boris Diaw, and Nazr Mohammed to go with growing talent Tyrus Thomas. Now, I’m not predicting a trip to the NBA Finals, but Jordan, like McKeon, has reached a desired spot in a short amount of time.
Ok, you say, that’s all well and good, but isn’t MJ the guy who drafted Kwame Brown and Adam Morrison? Sure, he did. No Hall of Famers there. But if you look at the rest of his resume, you’ll find that he’s actually done very well, albeit under the radar. While he did draft Brown #1 overall, one could easily see that 2001 was a poor draft, as only two lottery picks have ever made an All Star team, Pau Gasol (#3) and Joe Johnson (#10). While Jordan could’ve picked Gasol, up to that point no European player had ever had much success in the league, as Dirk Nowtizki was still a young gun. Everyone else in the top 5 (Tyson Chandler, Eddy Curry, and Jason Richardson) are regarded as overpaid and have never experienced much success in the league, Richardson coming the closest. So we give MJ a pass on that one. What about the next year? Well, MJ had the 11th and 17th picks in the draft. Of the players Mike had to choose from, only 9 are still in the NBA and 5 of those were picked in the second round. MJ happened to select one of the few still around, Jared Jeffries, with the 11th pick. While few would consider Jeffries lottery talent, he’s made a name for himself as a solid defender and likely will continue to play in the League for years to come. MJ also picked Juan Dixon, who had multiple successful seasons before heading to Europe this year. When Jordan arrived in Charlotte, he drafted Morrison, who is a bust (though partly due to injury) and Ryan Hollins. While Hollins is no world-beater, he is the lowest pick from that draft remaining. Jordan also signed Argentinian Walter Herrman, who played well in his short stay in Charlotte before being traded. In 2007, MJ traded his first pick to Golden State for Jason Richardson, who led the team in scoring with 21.8 points, a team record. Richardson later netted Diaw and Raja Bell, but we’ll get there in a minute, back to ’07. With the 22nd pick, Jordan selected Jared Dudley, who was also part of the Diaw/Richardson trade. Dudley is a superb bench player and will likely contend for Sixth man of the Year later in his career. Of those still on the board when Charlotte picked, likely only Aaron Brooks (who wouldn’t have fit on a team with Raymond Felton) has had more success to date. Now to 2008, where we see Jordan hire Hall of Fame coach Larry Brown (who drafted DJ Augustin) and trade for Diaw and Bell. While it was lampooned at the time, the trade for Diaw and Bell made the ‘Cats playoff contenders for the first time, and while they came up short, both had a part in this season’s playoff appearance. Diaw has fit in as the point forward, and Bell was traded for Stephen Jackson this season. Tyson Chandler was added for Emeka Okafor, and while that was also considered lopsided, it’s Chandler’s play that’s made the ‘Cats a solid defensive team in the paint. Tyrus Thomas was also added for merely a proctected first rounder and expiring contracts, and Theo Ratliff and Larry Hughes both came practically free of charge. While Jackson is likely the most responsible for the on-court improvement this year, one can see that the architect of the team isn’t as lazy and irresponsible as the mainstream media portrays him. Sure he’s had help from longtime friend Rod Higgins, but Jordan, just like McKeon, is a skilled manager of personnel, and knows how to make the trade or draft pick that helps the team in both the short run and the long run.
Looking forward, if McKeon’s career arc can be used as a guide, then Jordan will soon be reaching his goal of making the Finals. Hopefully, Trader Mike will also bring home that championship, just like Trader Jack.
I don’t want to say I’m devastated, but color me disappointed. With a sellout crowd of over 19,200 on hand for the annual Charlotte Bobcats Nascar night, featuring 4-time Sprint Cup champion Jimmie Johnson and Ladycat Jordan’s boyfriend Denny Hamlin, I would’ve hoped for a big win and settled for just a win. I mean, with a crazy home record of 18-4 coming in, what else should I expect? And at the end of regulation, it seemed that was what was going to happen. But instead, the Bobcats came out totally flat for overtime and were outscored 14-3 in the period to lose by a final of 106-95, after coming back from a 16 point deficit in regulation.
The game started off rather tepidly, with Charlotte losing each of the first three quarters and entering the 4th down by 10. About the only bright spots up to that point were Nazr Mohammed (12 points/9 rebounds) and Raymond Felton (14/5/4 assists) playing solidly on both ends of the floor. Soon to be named All-Star Gerald Wallace was held scoreless for much of the game, although he did finish with 9 points and 10 rebounds. In the fourth, along with Wallace, DJ Augustin (22/2/1) and DeSagana Diop (6/4/2 Blocks) asserted themselves as key players in the comeback. Diop would’ve had 8 points, but a jumper from about 10 feet out was called off for a shot clock violation. Down 92-90 with 6.8 seconds left, the ‘Cats came out of the timeout and Stephen Jackson (15/5/4) hit a floater from under the basket to send the game into OT. After that, well, lets just say it wasn’t pretty.
If you want to find places to put the blame, there are plenty. The Bobcats missed 6 free throws in 22 attempts, shot just 39.8 percent from the field (including a combined 10-38 from Boris Diaw, Stephen Jackson, and Gerald Wallace), and outside of DJ Augustin’s 5-9 3 point shooting, the team was 4 of 18, which comes out at an atrocious 22.2 percent. They had their shots blocked 11 times and were outrebounded by 7. And while it appears that the officials cannot count to three when the Magic have possesion, the Bobcats could have won despite bad officiating – which had Stephen Jackson complaining all night long, including him being assessed with the game’s only technical foul – that allowed Howard the freedom to have dinner and dessert in the lane. They had their chances and let it get away.
Charlotte now starts a six game road trip:
Monday in Denver (facing former Bobcat Malik Allen and G/F Stevie Graham’s brother Joey) – Sportsouth 9:00 ET
Tuesday in Pheonix (facing former Bobcats Jason Richardson and Jared Dudley) -FSCR 9:00 ET
Friday in Golden State (facing former Bobcat Vladi Radmanovic and announcer Dell Curry’s son Stephen) – FSCR 10:30 ET
Saturday in Sacramento (facing former Bobcat and tub of lard Sean May) – Sportsouth 10:00 ET
Monday the first in Portland (facing former Bobcat Juwan Howard) – Sportsouth 10:00 ET
Wednesday the third in Los Angeles against the Lakers (facing former Bobcats Shannon Brown and Adam Morrison) – Sportsouth 10:30 ET
Notes: Tyson Chandler missed the game once again, and while he is supposedly “day-to-day” I don’t think we’ll be seeing him anytime soon….DJ Augustin appeared to regain his confidence for at least the fourth quarter, expecting to make shots instead of hoping….Larry Brown played his centers 46 out of a possible 53 minutes, which is one of the highest amounts in a long time….Brandon Bass, the player many Bobcats fans have been clamoring for in a trade, had a DNP-CD, so don’t expect to see him in a Charlotte uniform….Dwight Howard was the only player with a double-double, collecting 10 points and 20 rebounds….The Bobcats wore special NASCAR themed uniforms, with checkered side panels; Jimmie Johnson recieved a special #4 “Johnson” jersey at halftime in honor of his 4 championships….