November 2008. The Hornets trounce the Thunder, 105-80; P. J. Carlesimo is relieved of his coaching duties before the plane leaves for the next game against the Hornets, this time in New Orleans. We lost that one, too, and we haven’t beaten the Bees since, although this one was wickedly close: 97-92, in a game that was in doubt until the last few seconds, in which the Thunder, down three, failed to get off a good shot, and James Posey finished the job with two free throws.
It didn’t matter that OKC outrebounded New Orleans, 44-35, or that they held Chris Paul to 14 points; CP3 ably distributed the ball, logging 13 assists, and all five Hornets starters finished in double figures, David West getting a team-high 19 and Peja Stojakovic hitting four of ten treys. (Peja didn’t even try from inside the arc.) What undid the Thunder, ultimately, was bad fourth-quarter shooting: three of 14, for a whole 11 points. Jeff Green, at least, was back in good form, picking up 20 points, and trusty Kevin Durant dropped in 27.
On the upside, hey, it’s the Hornets, and I suspect most of us still have a soft spot for the Bees, Berry Tramel notwithstanding. And we get two more shots at them this season.
The Pacers will be here Saturday, the second game of the homestand.