Jack Beginning To Shine
Jarrett Jack has played starter minutes his entire NBA career. That is, until an early season trade which sent him from Canada to the Crescent City. Jack is now a backup point guard to Chris Paul. The adjustment for Jack has taken time, but he's beginning to shine. His play off the bench Monday propelled the Hornets to a victory over the Toronto Raptors. Admittingly, the comfort level for Jack has taken some time. John DeShazier of the Times Picayune has more.
“Just seriously, trying to find a comfort level where I can direct people,” Jack said. “It’s hard to know where to direct them when I didn’t always know where I was supposed to be.
“It just takes time. I’ve never been through a situation where I was traded midseason. I see why people struggle (with it).”
The struggles appear to be easing, though.
Jack was on the floor with Paul down the stretch Monday, even after committing a turnover on consecutive possessions in the first 37 seconds of the fourth quarter.
He atoned with a 16-foot jumper to pull New Orleans to within 70-64 with 10:25 left, an 8-foot fadeaway to cut the deficit to 76-74 with 5:36 remaining and a reverse layup with
4:20 left to give the Hornets a 78-76 lead.
And when Toronto forged ahead again on Amir Johnson’s three-point play with 4:05 left, Jack assisted West on a layup to put the Hornets ahead for good, at 80-79, 17 seconds later.
“I think he had 17 points in 27 minutes,” Coach Monty Williams said. “That was big for us. He had a bucket and when we needed some stops, he did what was necessary to keep us afloat.
“His words were, ‘This is the toughest thing I’ve ever had to do.’ His minutes are up and down and I understand that. But I think his play helped us (against Toronto).”
And against Houston (23 points), Denver (10) and Washington (12).
True, there have been a couple of two-point outings mixed in, when Jack went a combined 2 for 13 from the field.
But those are becoming his exception rather than the norm, and New Orleans is benefiting.
“I try to have a positive influence,” he said. “It seemed we were in a little rut.”
Good thing for the Hornets he wasn’t. Better thing for them is that his are dwindling.
Jarrett Jack is playing the way many pundits anticipated he would for the Hornets. While it has taken longer than he had hoped, Jack is shining for the Hornets, while Bayless and Stojakovic (players sent from NOLA to Toronto in trade for JJ) battle through nagging injuries and poor floor production. Jarrett Jack is a competitive winner, and he is finally proving it in a Hornets uniform.