As part of Hornets.com’s preview of the 2008-09 season, we continue our look at what several of the major preseason publications are writing about the team. Today we review Lindy’s projections and opinions.
The preseason preview from Lindy’s uses a mathematical formula to project the finishes of each NBA division. As unlikely as this sounds - and it’s even more far-fetched that it would actually happen - Lindy’s predicts a four-way tie in the Southwest Division between Dallas, Houston, New Orleans and San Antonio. Here is more from the magazine on the 2008-09 Hornets:
On the Hornets’ overall outlook:
“The New Orleans Hornets were accused of sneaking up on everybody, but what they did last season wasn’t a surprise to them. They knew if they were healthy, they wouldn’t just make the playoffs, they would bust through the door. Now making the playoffs is no longer enough for the Hornets. Never mind the p-word, the c-word is now part of the Hornets’ venacular - as in championship.
“ ‘It’s not something we run away from,’ said general manager Jeff Bower, who has done a masterful job in building one of the most exciting and talented teams in the league. ‘I think that’s the next step for us as players and an organization.'
“Last season, the Hornets were a smash hit throughout the NBA, but especially back home in New Orleans. The fans embraced the Hornets and their style of play, which was easy to do.
“The Hornets tasted victory and bitter defeat all in one magical season. Getting the bitter taste out of their mouths should push this young group. Having James Posey around to show them what it takes to win in the postseason should be invaluable.”
On Byron Scott:
“Scott finally won the Coach of the Year award that escaped him when he guided the Nets to a franchise-best 52 wins during the 2001-02 season. Scott obviously is doing something right to have led two teams to their best records ever. Everything fell into place for Scott last year. His team was healthy and it played his style of exciting offensive basketball while also being one of the best defensive teams in the league.”
On David West:
“David West proved last season he should be considered among the game’s best power forwards. He earned the first of what should be many All-Star berths. For the fifth straight year, West increased his scoring and rebounding numbers. He averaged 20.6 points and 8.9 rebounds. If he can average 20 and 10, West truly will be an elite power forward. No one doubts he can or is willing to work to put up those numbers and be in that class.”
On James Posey:
“The Hornets learned a valuable lesson at home (in Game 7) against the (Spurs). Then two months later, the Hornets signed someone who could help them if they’re in that situation again and could teach them something about winning big games, having won so many. (Posey) could be the missing piece to the puzzle for this young group, many of whom enjoyed success for the first time as pros last season.
“Posey is a good three-point shooter, but his strength is defending multiple positions and being able to make big plays.
“ ‘We hit a home run (by signing) Mr. Posey,” Byron Scott said. “It obviously puts us a step closer to our ultimate goal, which is winning a championship, and that is what he wants to do. He’s done it with two different organizations, and hopefully we can get the trifecta.”
Posted by Hornets.com at 10:29 AM 0 comments
Monday, September 15, 2008
Hornets second in ESPN.com NBA 2009 title poll
By: Jim Eichenhofer, Hornets.com
ESPN.com recently asked 25 of its experts to predict which team will win the 2009 NBA championship. The leading selection, the Los Angeles Lakers, was relatively expected, collecting 12 votes. The Hornets (6 votes) were a surprise runner-up in the poll, however, earning more mentions than even the defending champion Boston Celtics (4 votes).
“The top challenger in our voting will surprise some: the up-and-coming New Orleans Hornets, not the Boston Celtics,” wrote ESPN.com. Later in the article, the website said the Hornets have a shot to win it all if these three things occur:
• "Newly acquired James Posey plays tight D and hits clutch 3s like he did in Miami and Boston."
• "Chris Paul improves on his MVP-worthy season from a year ago."
• "The young squad learned some valuable lessons during its impressive postseason run."
Posted by Hornets.com at 4:16 PM 1 comments
Thursday, September 11, 2008
Ask Chris Paul continues with Offseason: Part 2
By: Jim Eichenhofer, Hornets.com
When I came up with the idea during the summer of 2006 to begin our “Ask Chris Paul” feature on Hornets.com, the 6-foot guard had just wrapped up his 2005-06 NBA Rookie of the Year campaign. He was a relatively popular and well-known player at that point, but he had not yet achieved household-name status. When the Hornets' PR staff approached Chris and his agent about the idea, they immediately agreed to do it.
Two years later, he’s been an NBA All-Star, a runner-up in the league’s MVP voting and an Olympic gold medalist. His jersey is in the top 10 of uniform sales among all NBA players.
The most recent edition of “Ask Chris Paul” is now on the site (part 1 of this offseason appeared recently; there will be a part 3 coming soon). He has thoroughly enjoyed getting a chance to interact with fans and field questions from visitors to Hornets.com.
Multiple people have asked me recently about the feature, so I wanted to provide a few brief pieces of information that might help you get the question(s) you submit chosen by Hornets.com. We receive a large number of questions to email@example.com on a weekly basis – including a huge upswing in queries from citizens of China after Chris and the Redeem Team’s visit there – so to stand out, try to be as creative as possible. Generally speaking, the more unique your question, the better chance it will be selected and not duplicated by another fan.
One aspect of getting to see the questions that has been interesting to me is how many come from shorter-stature high school basketball players. Many kids want to know what tips and secrets CP3 might have to excel on the court, despite being a smaller player. We’ve included several of those lately, but also excluded many others simply because they were redundant to what someone else had already asked.
We’ll soon be sorting through the hundreds of e-mails that have been sent over the past few weeks. We’ll try to catch up with Chris for interviews during training camp and get several more editions of “Ask Chris Paul” on the site after the regular season tips off on Oct. 29.
To ask Chris Paul a question, send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org. Please include your full name and hometown. Also please include "Ask Chris Paul" in the subject of your e-mail.
Posted by Hornets.com at 1:17 PM 0 comments
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