Well folks, you get a special treat tonight. On this very special Monday night, you will not just get 1 game recap. That's right, you get 2, 2, 2 game recaps from the founding fathers of Trade Street Post. How do our thought and styles differ? How are the similar? Read them both and see whatcha think. Lots of times it seems like we may be brothers from other mothers...other times, we have to agree to disagree.
Have fun folks!
Did you watch this game? I repeat...did you watch this Bobcats game? I know that you did. If you didn't, you must have been a bit shy when trying to find a seat on the Bobcats bandwagon. We'll make room my friends because the rebuild is off to a pretty good start. All fans are more than welcome. It is just so intriguing that the Bobcats have won more games in the last 9 than they did in 30 games last season. The beauty of a season like we had last year is that it draws media attention. Any publicity is good publicity, right? The way I see it, you get labeled to fail. A rebuild occurs, and NBA fans say, "Yeah, right. The Bobcats suck." The funny part is that those same folks are looking over at us going, "I wonder how they're doing this season." They tune in and catch highlights or they stumble a blog site such as this to see what fans of the team are saying. They start listening to analysts talking about how a game was played and they are drawn in. I absolutely love it. Here we are, nine games into the season and we have 5 wins. 2 more and we tie last year. Best part of it all is that there are 73 more games in the season. This season WILL be better than last season. Bobcats won tonight by a score of 102-98. The game wasn't one that was a cut and dry victory either. Read on my friends.
Understand that there were just some things that you could count on last year. Gas would be pushing $4 a gallon, Dwight Howard gossip would be in the sports news, and the Bobcats were most likely not coming back from a 20-point deficit. I'm a fan and cheerleader for this team, so I earned the right to be honest and open about the team that I call family. If you'd like to know just how the Bobcats won tonight, it's a simple explanation. Experts and NBA fans take notes on this one: This is not last year's Bobcats. They have a new head coach, several new faces, and a new culture forming. These are the Charlotte Bobcats. We are TougherFasterStronger. We fight through every possession. We play hard-nosed defense, we make smart passes and take smart shots. We do our best to not squander shots. We play smart and we don't waste possessions. We are young, and the talent is developing nicely. We are the "new and improved" Charlotte Bobcats.
Why have I gone on such a rant? Perhaps you read Bruce's article from earlier today, and if not, you should. The purpose of my rant is simple. Though we are very early in this season, MJ may have some issues in the rebuild. Michael Kidd-Gilchrist and Jeff Taylor are developing wonderfully. Kemba Walker has also developed incredibly over the summer. Byron Mullens is figuring out how to make his game more complete, and he is becoming more and more fun to watch every night. We might actually have more talent than we expected to have this early on. It is still very premature to say this, but if players keep developing, and talent level keeps increasing, building through the draft will become fairly difficult unless we can move some pieces for high 1st round picks, or young talent that have untapped potential. Just keep watching fans. Hard to say what is brewing on Trade Street.
As for tonight's game, we started cold, warmed up, the Bucks got hot, and our defense showed up at the end. I mentioned that last season one thing you could count on was the Bobcats not coming back from deficits, especially when they were north of 15 points. Well fans, they did just that tonight. They were down by 16 points and were 0 for 9 in the 4th quarter. They dug in, played defense, and came away with the victory. Culture change is in full effect my friends. Here are some player stats for the night:
Sessions = 23pts / 4 assists / 4 rebs / 1 steal
Walker = 19pts / 4 assists / 3 rebs / 3 steals
Mullens = 19pts / 9 rebs
Kidd-Gilchrist = 15pts / 9 rebs / 4 assists / 1 steal / 1 block
Taylor = 10pts / 4 assists / 0 turnovers / 2 rebs / 1 block
Take note that our 2 rookies combined for 25pts / 11 rebs / 8 assists / 1 steal / and 2 blocks. I'd call that developing quite nicely.
Sessions could become a candidate for 6th man of the year if he keeps scoring like he does off the bench. Ramon, for giving us the points down the stretch, you receive tonight's Trade Street Post Game-breaker award. Honorable mention goes to our rookie tandem of MKG and Taylor. Taylor was asked to come into the game, off the bench in the 4th to shut down Monta Ellis in the final seconds of the game. Assignment given and assignment completed Mr. Taylor. You still have a lot to show us this season, as does MKG, and I can't wait to see it.
On a darker note, we found out tonight that Tyrus Thomas will be out for 2 months with a tear in his left calf muscle. The trade for Hakim Warrick couldn't have come at a better time than now. Matt Carroll, we all will miss you, but perhaps you'll return someday to the Bobcats front office, or some sort of shooting coach. I guess time will tell. For the present though, thank you for netting us a need at the PF spot. Gerald Henderson's timetable for return is still questionable. Ben Gordon left the game tonight with a knee contusion. Let's all hope he's going to be OK...otherwise, the SG position suddenly becomes somewhat thin (Sorry Cory Higgins, but you are not supposed to be in the NBA).
Our next game is Wednesday at home versus the Toronto Raptors. Hopefully, we can get another win streak going. This Bobcats team is something that the city of Charlotte and the state of North Carolina can be thankful for. I know I am.