Score: 103-94 New Jersey Nets defeat Bobcats
Charlotte Bobcats record: 26-26
Offensive Efficiency: 97.9
Defensive Efficiency: 107.3
Meritorious Player: Gerald Wallace edges out Raymond Felton for the award – Crash finished the night with 21 points on 14 attempts, 10 rebounds, 3 blocks, 2 assists, 1 steal, and just 1 turnover. Despite a somewhat disappointing weekend at the All-Star festivities, it looks like Gerald was able to recuperate a bit from his various injuries, playing like the Crash we expect to see.
The Bobcats help the Nets in their quest to avoid history, falling to 1-2 on the season against the epically bad New Jersey squad. Read into that what you will. As for me, I have received assistance in this recap from the LOLBobcats – two pictures to sum up the night:
The Bobcats took 5 straight threes in the fourth quarter…well before it got down to desperation time. The run started with the Bobcats trailing by just 7 and 8 minutes remaining in the game. Unfortunately for the Bobcats, it included just 1 make – their only make of the quarter from deep, going for 1-8 from outside. For a team that ranks 22nd in the league in 3-point shooting, at under 34%, that is not a successful strategy.
The Bobcats allowed the Nets to shoot 51.9% from the field, led by Brook Lopez going 8-11 on his way to 16 points. And Courtney Lee, seen above dunking on the LOLBobcats, got his 21 on just 11 attempts. Charlotte did manage to slow down Devin Harris, who managed just 17 on 16 attempts – but a couple of those attempts were really just him throwing the ball at the rim on a drive to give his teammates a chance for the follow, with Josh Boone providing a resounding example in the fourth. The Cats struggled to defend the pick and roll with Harris getting to the paint repeatedly, and while his shooting percentage was not spectacular, it got the Bobcats out of position for the rebound, with the Nets capitalizing with 12 offensive rebounds to the Bobcats 25 defensive.
Mid-season doldrums for the team? A little out of sync with Tyson Chandler returning? Or have teams figured out how to beat the Bobcats ball-pressure intensive attack? Before the New Year, the Bobcats forced turnovers on 17.3% of opponent possessions: Since the ball dropped, that is down to 15.3%. With Tyson out for a chunk of those games, it is tough to draw a definitive conclusion, but it bears watching.