Dude. Seriously. Seriously, dude. That was embarrassing.
("Embarrassed" by benrybobenry, cc-licensed)
The story of this 104-75 loss to the Milwaukee Bucks was the Bobcats' complete inability to deal with Michael Redd. I gave up and recorded my thoughts at the start of the fourth quarter:
Matt Carroll gave it a try, but picked up two quick fouls while also taking and making his only shot attempt in 8 minutes before the game got out of hand. Shannon Brown, the guy I suggested should get a chance to start at the two with Raja Bell out with injury, fared much worse, hitting only 1 of his 5 shots, committing 2 fouls, and turning it over 3 times in his 9 minutes. Emeka was a stalwart on defense, negating Andrew Bogut almost entirely, but he couldn't score, himself. It seems the Bucks decided they'd attack the Bobcats' weakest link and wouldn't let up until Charlotte proved they could stop the tactic.
I guess the lesson is that Raja Bell may have been showing signs of severe decline on both ends of the floor, but he still commands a respect that Matt Carroll, et al, cannot hope to command. Because he was once an elite defender, teams won't challenge Bell with the brazenness they will challenge Carroll. Once Redd came out of the game and stopped torturing the hapless Bobcats guards, Charlie Villanueva went right to work attacking Boris Diaw. They're tough for anyone to guard when they're clicking, and boy, did they click.
-- Wait, was that Adam Morrison getting garbage minutes in the fourth quarter? Well after the game was decided? Yes! Three measly minutes in which to be scrutinized and judged! That'll do him some good.
-- Was that Emeka Okafor playing and expending energy in garbage time, well after the game was decided? The Bucks had pulled their starters. If Larry Brown is serious about getting a lot of low pressure minutes for Ajinca, Singletary, and Morrison, this was the game to do it. Go with Singletary, Shannon Brown, Morrison, Ajinca, and Mohammed. That's why they're there. Or Juwan Howard, if Nazr can't go. Or, you know, Ryan Hollins instead of Mohammed, seeing as Mohammed doesn't make the difference between in or out of the playoffs, and the team's better off giving Hollins some burn.
-- Morrison is a total mess. Carroll is a total mess. Ajinca has no business on an NBA roster. Felton is eyeing mess-ness with a glazed-over buzzy look. People, this is the Larry Brown Era. This is what Knicks fans warned us would happen.
-- It's 28-17 Utah early in the fourth quarter of the Sugar Bowl. If you don't want the Utes to win, you must also shove children out of the ice cream line.