I should first say that I’m totally in favor of playing Hakim Warrick over Tyrus Thomas whenever it’s humanly possible, and probably also when it’s possible for cyborgs, androids, mutants, Vulcans, Terminators, Robocops, UniSols, replicants, and robots with human brains. Thomas has been an abject failure for the Bobcats, and Warrick is better than him in most meaningful offensive categories: TS% (.472 to .396), PER (11.8 to 8.7), RB% (10.8 to 9.8), AST% (8.7 to 7.0). Thomas does have an edge defensively—the Bobcats are 5.4 points stingier per 100 possessions with Thomas on the floor, vs. .3 points for Warrick; Thomas allows a defensive PER of 17.6 compared to Warrick’s 18.6; and Thomas is a superior shot blocker (in fact, Warrick apparently couldn’t block a shot if you pegged the ball directly at his groin). But I would gladly fork over that 1.0 PER for the privilege of never having to see Thomas hoist those hopeless 20-footers, especially when you throw in Warrick’s ability to get to the foul line. So, good move, coach Dunlap for going all in on Hakim.
But oh lord in heaven did Warrick cough it up like a Beijing street urchin at the worst possible time last night against the Sacramento Kings. With the game tied at 90 and about a minute-and-a-half left, Warrick fumbled a pass, had it stolen by Isaiah Thomas, and then chased down Tyreke Evans on the fast break for a goaltend. That’s right: a turnover and a goaltend in one sequence; it was the ol’ Bismack-two-for-one. He then rattled out a pretty makeable 7-footer that was rebounded by the Kings, and after an iffy-Kemba Walker shooting foul, Thomas sank both free throws to effectively end the game.