Tonight's game will be important. The Houston Rockets are Western Conference/Southwest Division rivals with a slim lead on the Hornets in the standings. A win tonight would help the Hornets in the standings, but it would also help the team and the team's fans rebound from the absolutely atrocious outing against Chicago that occured on Saturday. Will it matter if the Hornets do win? At the Hive doesn't think so, and that post makes some good and very depressing points.
That said, I don't know if I can give up on this team even if I want to. I'm too invested in this team and this season to decide that the Hornets are too flawed to make any noise in the playoffs. Make no mistake, this is a heavily flawed team. The depth problem continues to haunt the team and the bench has become not just bad but ridiculously, patheticly unproductive. The bench's lack of offense is not surprising, but their inabilty to stop the opposing team is. Because of these issues, a single injury (Peja) cripples the team. Even if Peja had been in the lineup, I'm not sure the outcome of the Chicago game would have been much different. Why? Well, this team has had games that were as bad as the game in Chicago despite a fully healthy lineup.
Yet it's impossible for me to declare this season over. I've seen the 08-09 Hornets play at their best, and its fantastic.
I've seen David West drop 40 points and 11 rebounds on the Lakers in the Staples Center.
I've seen Rasual Butler play the best ball of his life. I've seen him block a shot, lose the ball, steal the ball, run the floor and then hit a jumper all in the course of about 15 seconds in a huge, pressure-filled game against the San Antonio Spurs.
I've seen Sean Marks... yes, Sean Marks, slam home a game-winning dunk.
And I've seen Chris Paul play his heart out every single night, and I know that when Chris Paul is on the floor, its never over.
So here's to the 08-09 Hornets in all their flawed, inconsistent glory. I hope you guys win tonight.