Bobcats-Bulls Preview

Charlotte Bobcats Status Check:
Record: 24-31
Division: 3-7
Conference: 14-20
Road Record: 10-17
Last 10 Games: 4-6
Streak: 2 wins
Last game: Crushed Lakers 109-89
PPG: 93.8 (28th)
Opponents PPG: 96.4 (12th)
Offensive Rating: 103.4 (25th)
Defensive Rating: 106.3 (14th)
Pace: 90.0 (24th)
Effective Field Goal Percentage: .482 (24th)
Turnover Percentage: .148 (29th)
Defensive Rebound Percentage: .756 (5th)
Offensive Rebound Percentage: .271 (10th)
Free Throws Per Field Goal Attempt: .247 (4th)
Opp. eFG%: .491 (13th)
Opp. TO%: .129 (21st)
Opp. FT/FGA: .224 (10th)
Leading scorer: Stephen Jackson (19.0)

Stats from Basketball-Reference.com.

Bobcats Injury Report:
D.J. Augustin: Sprained left wrist (played last night vs. Lakers)
DeSagana Diop: Ruptured right Achilles (out for the season)
Tyrus Thomas: Left knee surgery (out for two months)

Overview:
The Bobcats destroyed the Lakers last night. It was L.A.’s most lopsided loss of the season. Afterwards, Phil Jackson said “I’m embarrassed about what we did that that’s it. Thanks you.” and walked away. End of press conference.

Charlotte has now won eight of their last 10 games against the defending champs.

Admittedly, it was the Lakers’ fourth game in five nights, all on the road, but the victory sort of underscores the Bobcats’ status as a real wildcard team. Check out their schedule: On any given night, they could either beat any team in the league or lose to any team.

Put the Bulls into that category of teams the ‘Cats can — and do — beat.

According to STATS LLC: “The Bulls (36-16) are an Eastern Conference-best 13-4 since Jan. 8, but two of those losses have come against the Bobcats (24-31). In losing to Charlotte, Chicago has plenty of company among the NBA’s elite. The Bobcats have won three of five, with the wins all coming against top contenders. They beat East-leading Boston on Feb. 7, won at Atlanta on Saturday, and rolled past the defending champion Los Angeles Lakers 109-89 at home Monday.”

Of course, Charlotte’s two losses came against the Pacers (24-28) and Nets (17-39). So, with the ‘Cats, you never really know what you’re going to get. But there’s no question they’re dangerous. A real snake in the grass to the league’s better teams.

On the plus side, assuming you’re rooting for th Bullies, is that the Bobcats are playing on the second night of back-to-back games. According to TeamRankings.com, Charlotte is 4-12 in games with no rest, and they rank 27th in both Win Percentage (25.0) and Point Differential (-7.8). The only teams below them in Win Percentage are the Cavaliers (23.5), Wizards (15.4) and Nets (14.3). The only teams below them in differential are the Pistons (-8.0), Wizards (-9.5) and Cavaliers (-9.9).

Bottom line: If you’re going to catch the Bobcats, it’s best if you do it when they played the previous night.

It’s also worth pointing out that the Bobcats haven’t exactly dominated the Bulls this season. Their two wins came by a combined total of six points (96-91 in Charlotte and 83-82 in Chicago). Meanwhile, the Bulls have won five in a row at home and are 23-4 in the United Center. That’s the best home record in the Eastern Conference, by the way.

Update! Here’s something potentially ominous for Bulls fans: Sebastian Pruiti of NBA Playbook breaks down how the Bobcats enticed the Lakers to attack the rim…where they (the ‘Cats) shut them (the Lakers) down. According to Hoopdata, the Bulls are 32-for-58 at the rim against the Bobcats this season.

8 Responses to Bobcats-Bulls Preview

  1. gorditadog@aol.com'
    Gorditadogg February 15, 2011 at 2:36 pm #

    We had a lot of trouble with Augustin and Diaw on the pick-and-roll last game, but did a pretty good job against Wallace and Captain Jack. I’m still trying to figure out why we have so much trouble against Charlotte. They are a well-balanced veteran team, maybe we just need to give them more respect.

  2. Inception February 15, 2011 at 3:05 pm #

    if CHI loses this game, better hope they don’t face them in the 1st round….they will have our #, like they do with LA.

  3. admata1789@gmail.com'
    BigUpsTo#15 February 15, 2011 at 7:35 pm #

    Hey Matt,

    Not sure if you’ve seen this but it may deserve it’s own post…

    http://www.slamonline.com/online/nba/2011/02/pip-talk/

    … The great Scottie Pippen did a real interview without pulling any punches. It’d be awesome to hear your thoughts on the interview.

    “I just felt it was an insult to every team that’s played in this League to think that one team can be put together, and now all of a sudden we got—excuse my word—a jackass like Jeff Van Gundy saying they can win 72 games and break the Bulls’ record.”

  4. Inception February 15, 2011 at 7:42 pm #

    I agree with Pip’s thoughts, but the Heat can legitimately break the record next year.

  5. handkuft@yahoo.com'
    GotNext February 15, 2011 at 9:17 pm #

    I wouldn’t be surprised if this is a blow out, unless Captain Jack technical fouls them to victory…

  6. gorditadog@aol.com'
    Gorditadogg February 15, 2011 at 10:00 pm #

    Loved the Pippen quote about Van Gundy, and also his shot at Chris Bosh. I also just saw this tweet from Tom Haberstroh:

    “Synergy’s top 5 worst defenders (min. 300 plays): J.R. Smith, Ramon Sessions, Daniel Gibson, Marco Belinelli, Nic Batum.”

    Nic Batum can’t play defense? I thought he was the NBA’s self-proclaimed expert on D.

  7. inkybreath@gmail.com'
    inkybreath February 16, 2011 at 12:39 am #

    How does the saying go?

    “Those who can’t do; teach. (Or talk sh*t.)”

  8. inkybreath@gmail.com'
    inkybreath February 16, 2011 at 3:34 am #

    Nice win …

    Did we see the first Keith Bogans heat-check tonight?

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