Sixers Squash Hornets
Bad, bad, bad. There’s really no other way to describe the Hornets offensive performance against the 76ers on Sunday in Philadelphia. With the Hornets offense in the toilet, and the 76ers offense scoring early and often, it was never much of a game.
The Sixers took charge with a 17-2 run that began with 1:21 left in the first quarter and lasted until there was 5:07 to go in the second, with Iguodala and Williams each scoring seven points during the spurt.
The Hornets, losers of 8 of 11, shot just 14 percent from the floor in the first half and didn’t make a field goal in a span that lasted 8:14, from a Marcus Thornton jumper to bucket by Paul. New Orleans missed 13 straight field goals at one point during the drought.
“It’s a mixture of us recognizing that they’re struggling on the offensive end and being aggressive as well,” Williams said. “And not allowing them to get a rhythm, not allowing them to get back in the game.”
New Orleans’ 23 first-half points and 10 in the second quarter were season lows. They shot 30.4 percent for the game.
“I don’t even catch myself looking at the score,” Paul said. “When you’re out there playing, it’s about the next possession. How can we get a stop and how can we score. We weren’t making shots. We kept settling for outside jump shots instead of attacking the basket. It’s been like that for a while.”
New Orleans hasn’t scored 100 points since Nov. 19, a stretch of 12 games. The Hornets are 6-9 after starting the season 8-0.
When the Hornets don’t get offense from someone other than the all-star duo of Chris Paul and David West, they simply cannot compete. Emeka Okafor scored a grand total of 2 points. Trevor Ariza is not a skilled offensive player, and Marco Belinelli is a talent, but his outside shooting can be streaky. Marcus Thornton is an offensive weapon, but a defensive liability, and the usually reliable Willie Green had a terrible game Sunday, going 0-7 from the field. There was discussion of Dell Demps exploring other trade options after the trade exception money the Hornets received from their trades earlier in the season and late in the offseason. Monty Williams coaching forte is defense, but his team needs a defensive minded player whose forte is offense. Other wise, Chris Paul and David West are going to burn out by the all-star break. Both are exceptional players, but they can’t do it alone offensively.