As Charlotte thaws from the snow and ice that kept 18,000 fans away from the Memphis game, the Bulls made their way to town, even found a gate to deplane at the airport. (Atlanta postponed their game against Milwaukee but then again they had dudes ice skating up and down streets downtown) The Bulls presented a definite challenge to the newly sparked Bobcats. The Bobcats fully feeling a 5-2 record under coach Paul Silas, entered the game, in my opinion, knowing they had something to prove. You see, their 5 wins were against Detroit, Cleveland, Minnesota, Washington and Memphis, not exactly the cream of the crop. Chicago, 4th in the East, beat Boston and Detroit but had lost to the Nets and Philly, go figure. I don’t follow them, I like some of their pieces, remains to be seen how well Tom Thibodeau (had to look that one up 3 times) can coach, that is HEAD coach because he obviously is a good assistant.
So, according to Stephanie Ready, the team had a great shoot around. She kept saying they finished it out by “clapping it up.” Now I don’t know about you, but I love clapping it up. I clap it up once a day just to let everybody know how I feel about something. So, riding that excellent walk-through and clapping it up, the Bobcats got out to a great start, keyed in large part by Kwame Brown! When Kwame is hot, you’re in trouble, unless it’s JUST Kwame heating up, then you’ll be fine and win the game 30 to 106 or something. But Kwame sparked things, DJ found him, whoa, hold on…looking at the Play-by-Play on ESPN.com to check my statements, it looks like Boris Diaw was the key to Kwame’s success. Gerald Wallace showed little rust in his return from an ankle injury.
The first quarter was exceptional, the guys really played well on all cylinders against a pretty good team, great young point guard. They were missing Joakim Noah, but damn it was nice to see the Bulls without having to put up with him…not because he’d do so much damage but because I just can’t stand the guy. My immediate thought after the game was, if you were to chart the day on a line graph, it’d look exactly like a standard EKG read out.
Good start with the shoot-around, great first, solid 2nd then it dips…the third quarter was not good. Not fun to watch….The Bobcats couldn’t stop jacking up threes. I don’t know what it was but just frustrating because all you could do sitting at home is say “SOMEBODY TELL THEM THEY CAN SHOOT CLOSER!” Then Kwame started fouling. Coach puts in McGuire in Kwame’s place, he starts fouling and a 13 point halftime lead is evaporated. It wasn’t turnovers for once, it was the horrible shot selection. 6 of 19 over the quarter if my fingers count correctly….ugly shots, quick shots, no chance of a second chance, making these poor shot selections the equivilant of a turnover. Just atrocious. But they were not broken!