Willie Green and Trevor Ariza combined for 52 points. That’s really all you need to know, because how could the Hornets possibly lose with an unlikely output like that? Green had an absolutely ridiculous night, making a franchise record 12 consecutive shots to start off his night. The most ridiculous part about it? Only one of those shots came inside of ten feet, meaning he just kept making jumpshot after jumpshot. Combine his amazing performance with a 21-point output from Ariza and 17 more from Landry, and there was simply no way that the Hornets were going to let this one get away. Game notes after the jump; only three more to go!
- Judging by the stat line, it was not a great game for Chris Paul, but it didn’t have to be. With the Way Green, Ariza and Landry were shooting the ball, he simply deferred to them all night and they delivered. 3-8 on the game for CP3 for just 7 points, but also totaled 12 assists, 5 rebounds, and 2 steals.
- Can’t say enough about Willie Green tonight. He had the crowd going nuts in the 4th quarter when he single-handedly put the game out of reach for Phoenix. In a 6-minute stretch from the 11 minute mark to the 5 minute mark in the 4th, Green made the final five of his 12 consecutive shots for a total of 13 points, helping to stretch the Hornets’ lead from a manageable 8 points to a game-deciding 19 point edge. Though Green missed his final five shots, a 12-17 shooting night for 31 points (5-6 from beyond the arc) is a game you’d expect to see from Kobe, not Willie. Definitely a performance we will never see again from him, but it was a lot of fun to watch.
- Trevor Ariza had his third consecutive solid performance on offense, and is really starting to make me wonder if he’s finally figuring it out. Sure, he still took his share of ill-advised long jumpers, but those only made up about 50% of his shots instead of the normal 75% to 80%. He consistently got to the rim, and as as result he finished 9-17 for 21 points, as well as getting 8 rebounds, 4 assists, and 3 steals. If the Ariza that the Hornets have in the playoffs is the one we’ve seen over the past three games, this team could surprise some people.
- After one rough game on Wednesday night, Landry was back to his hyper-efficient scoring on Friday. Landry finished with 17 points on 8-10 shooting to go along with 5 rebounds (2 offensive, both resulting in put-back dunks). Don’t look now, but his production is looking more and more like David West every game.
- Not much else to talk about from any of the other Hornets, but they didn’t really need much. Belinelli made 4 of his 11 shots for just 9 points. Okafor finished 3-8 for 10 points and an uncharacteristically low 5 rebounds. Jack finished 3-6 for 8 points and an unusually high 6 assists. Smith added some quality minutes off the bench, making 3 of his 4 shots to go along with 4 rebounds.
NEXT GAME: The Hornets travel to Memphis on Sunday night. Honestly, I think there’s a good chance that since the Grizzlies have locked up a playoff spot but are currently the 8th seed, they may just tank the rest of the season to make sure they get the Spurs instead of the Lakers in the first round. Don’t be surprised to see the Hornets win in a landslide Sunday night, but only time will tell. Get excited, Hornets fans!!!