Expecting the Charlotte Hornets to win games these days is not a smart thing to do. They constantly disappoint with their inconsistent play, lack of execution, and masterful skill of blowing away leads. Tonight they won a game they were supposed to win, and in convincing fashion no less.
The Philadelphia 76ers are a very bad basketball team. This current iteration of the Sixers are notorious for putting together a roster without talent in an effort to lose a lot of games. The end result is intent on getting high draft picks and all star level talent in the grand scheme of things. But for now they are very bad, albeit with a few flashes of good play.
The Sixers did not start off tonight playing like a bad basketball team. They shot over 50% from the field and turned the Hornets defense into swiss cheese. Their strategy was quite simply to stop Al Jefferson and dare the rest of the Hornets to beat them and for awhile it worked. That was until midway through the 2nd quarter. The Hornets had steadily grown their lead throughout the game and were leading by a small double digit lead. Then the game got very ugly, very quickly. The highlight was a play where Al Jefferson airballed a jump shot. The Sixers responded by marching right down the floor and shooting an airball of their own.
Yeah, it was that kind of game. Despite the Hornets ugly play, they eventually managed to increase their lead to an insurmountable deficit, without a little scare of course.
The Hornets led by more than 20 points in the third quarter and were comfortably ahead. Then, they had to give all Hornets fans a bit of a scare by letting the Sixers go on a run. Philadelphia managed to drop Charlotte's lead down to 13 points, and it looked like the same predictable Hornets. After the small scare, Charlotte managed to increase their lead again in the fourth quarter, allowing them a comfortable coast to the finish line. It was one of Charlotte's better wins on the year, but playing the worst team in the NBA has a way of doing that.
The Hornets didn't play a perfect game, they just played better than a very bad Sixers team. There were flashes of good here and there. The Hornets ran some actual plays throughout the game and looked organized too. That's been a rarity this season and it was nice to see. However, Charlotte still had many moments where they dribbled the ball down the floor and didn't look like they knew what their plan was. Charlotte's lack of organization on offense has been a large problem this season.
The defense started off very bad and I'm fairly confident a better team would have been able to exploit it. It's the same problem as the offense. Charlotte has flashes where the defense looks organized and things are clicking, but their lack of consistency allows teams back into games.
All complaints aside, the Hornets came into Philadelphia and took care of business. Kemba Walker had 30 points and was a large factor into the Hornets dominant win. They didn't let their sloppy play at times ruin the game as a whole and responded when they needed to. The team still needs better organization but things are improving, which is all we can ask for at the moment.