As the summer league success the Bobcats have been able to maintain gets weirder and weirder, I can’t help but imagine that this is a preview of what the future in Charlotte is going to be like. Thursday night, the Bobcats handled the Nuggets quite easily on the way to their 4th straight victory in Vegas.
The up-tempo defensive style that involves a 2-2-1 full court press continued to shine again last night as Charlotte forced 22 Denver turnovers while only committing 11 themselves. The Bobcats are now +39 in turnover margin and a stat that Mike Dunlap claims is the “most important in the game.” Not only are the turnovers forced giving the Cats more possessions than their opponents, but it’s also filtering into the up-tempo offensive style that Dunlap prefers and leads to easy buckets.
Kemba Walker played his best game of the entire summer league so far, finishing with 19 points and 10 assists. Kemba was super efficient on 8-13 from the field and also added 4 rebounds & 2 steals to pad the stat line. Walker has found a great balance of distributing the rock and getting his own all at the same time. The up-tempo style offense is helping him get more dimes on the stat sheet, but Kemba has also still shown his Uconn type of play by creating his own shot and getting in amongst the big men to finish. Walker leads the entire summer league in assist averaging 7.3/game.
Kemba and the Bobcats seem to have far more energy towards the end of games than their opponents and after the game he explained that’s exactly the key to their success so far.
“We’ve been working really hard on our conditioning. Our goal is to wear team’s down and that’s what we’re doing,” commented Walker.
Although Byron Mullens was not able to backup his 33-point performance from Tuesday night, Bismack Biyombo stepped up with his best game of the summer with 12 points, 7 rebounds & 3 blocks.
As soon as I start to get excited about the Bobcats success this summer, people all say the same thing- ‘It’s only summer league.’ That may be true, but there is another truth hidden beneath the surface of this teams success in Vegas- the Bobcats have a vision, plan and future under Mike Dunlap and one can’t help to ponder if this current success is a preview of what’s to come in the future.
Charlotte will conclude summer league play tonight against Memphis at 6:30 ET.