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Game 64: Hive Live

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Golden State 131 (17–42) | New Orleans 134 (32–32)

Yay! We're not reeling anymore!

Barely coming up for air in an unreasonably fast-paced game (we hit the 100-points-equals-free-chicken-from-Popeyes plateau by the end of the third quarter), the Hornets held on to win despite Anthony Morrow's best efforts. The Bees got solid-to-great performances by Dimes, Buckets, DX, Mekatron, and Peja. (Sorry Peja, no nickname for you.) Even Mo Pete showed up with some solid contributions, as the Bees improved to .500.

But how do you account for a Hornet W when both teams shoot over 58% from the floor and and 45% from deep? By owning the paint. When teams play the type of basketball where they're constantly firing up shots, it quickly becomes a game of runs and droughts. So, if you can rebound well and make plays in the paint when your 17 and 20 footers aren't dropping, you'll probably do alright.

Tonight, the Hornets did just this, owning a huge margin in offensive rebounds (15 to 4), defensive rebounds (44 to 23), second chance points (I forgot this one, but we lead by double digits), and points in the paint (68 to 44). Yes, you read that correctly: the Hornets finished with 68 points in the paint. Sheesh.

Bullets after the jump.

  • David West was filthy. 28 points (11 for 16), 13 boards, 3 assists, and 2 steals in 41 minutes. The Warriors had no answer for him.
  • Emeka Oakafor also turned a hell of a performance. 22 points (10 for 12), 11 boards, 2 assists, and 1 block in 33 minutes. Probably could have played more time, but Bower tried to load the court with jump shooters to keep up with the Warriors from downtown.
  • Darren Collison: 16 points (7 of 12), 20 assists, 1 rebound, and 3 steals in 46 minutes. Those 20 assists are good for a Hornet Rookie Record and they match Steve Nash for an NBA game high this season. (Yes, I glazed over the 7 turnovers, but the kid played a gazillion possessions in 46 minutes of action, so I'll cut him a little slack tonight.)
  • Marcus Thornton: 28 points (11 of 19), 6 boards, 2 assists, 2 steals in 33 minutes. The dude was everywhere (as per usual). It's amazing. Gerry V talked about Marcus' strengths on the post game radio show, saying that shooters who move well when they don't have the ball are extremely dangerous. He even likened him to (a younger) Rip Hamilton. Not bad, kid. Not bad.
  • The game was hyped up around the match-up of DC and Stephen Curry. Curry gets a lot of press as a potential ROY, and rightfully so. After all, his per game line of 16 points, 5.4 assists, 1.8 steals, and 4.2 turnovers is pretty good for a rookie. DC has some ground to make up in that particular race, as he's only showing 10.9 points, 4.8 assists, 1 steal, and 2.4 turnovers per game. But... but, but, but... check out his numbers as a starter (over the last 18 games): 20.7 points, 9.8 assists, 1.8 steals, and 3.7 turnovers. Hmmmm... that reminds me of another point guard who wears teal creole blue...
  • Anyway, Curry had a pretty poor showing, only racking up 12 points (on 5 of 13 shooting... yuck), 6 assists, and 4 turnovers. Credit Collison for matching Curry's speed and playing him close all night. The effort really shows in the final line.
  • Holy bejeezum, Anthony Morrow. 28 points. 11 of 13 from the field. 6 of 6 from deep, most of which came in a row (and it felt like it would never end). This guy couldn't miss from anywhere. Every time the Hornets went up by a decent margin, there was Morrow to bring it back within the Warriors' reach. And if it wasn't Morrow, it was...
  • Reggie Williams. Though less prolific from deep, he also contributed 28 points on 10 of 16 shooting. Our D broke down more and more as the game wore on (not surprising, give the amount of possessions) and these two guys were the ones taking the most advantage of us.
  • Peja had a nice night (16 points, 3 assists, 1 board), but left the game early with a strained groin. Hornets fans (and fantasy basketball-ers) stay posted for an update on his status.

Opponent's Take: Golden State Of Mind

Warriors vs Hornets boxscore