The Bobcats were right there with the Atlanta Hawks until late in the third quarter, when the visitors went on a run, extending the lead to 11 points. The Cats couldn't recover in the fourth period, falling 103-87. It's doubly frustrating because the game was winnable, and now they're leaving Charlotte for a west coast road trip off a loss to a divisional rival.
Ultimately, the Cats didn't do anything wrong, in particular. Even without Al Horford, Atlanta is a more talented team, and sometimes there's nothing a team can do to deny the more talented team.
The Bobcats are in for their most brutal stretch of the schedule the next few weeks. First, it's a road trip with 6 games in 9 days. As soon as they get back home, they'll play three home games in four days -- against Miami, Dallas, and Boston. Yikes.
Game thread comment, lowlights, and highlights after the jump.
GAME THREAD COMMENT
Ft.Mill Bobcat -- Watching Andre Iguodala when we played Philly reminded me of Gerald Wallace last year.
-- Stephen Jackson has the potential to be so much better than he is, if only he'd take fewer shots. Maybe NBA basketball teams have to have someone be the focal point of the offense, and it's too much for a team to evenly spread the ball around (ask the Celtics?), but this team is dying for that. Jack could reinvent his career as a defensive stopper, occasional three point shooter, and court-runner, a super-powered Matt Barnes. And that would be better for him and for his team. But he's hooked in to shooting. Note, also, that we're just going through the same cycle every other fan base has gone through with him. Jack scored 10 points on 14 attempts, got only 1 rebound, and only 2 assists.
-- The Cats' team defense was pretty bad, allowing the Hawks to shoot 37-73, 51%, from the field, and 9-19, 47%, from three. Shots were falling. Maybe the Cats could have contested harder, but I didn't see that as a glaring problem.
-- D.J. Augustin, again, was an effective offensive player, scoring 20 points on 17 attempts, and dishing 7 assists with 0 turnovers.
-- Everyone on the bench shot well. Really, it was Jackson's shooting, and Gerald Wallace's 2-9 from the field, that dragged the Cats' FG% below 50%.
-- The team turned it over only 10 times. Their reduced turnovers, game after game, is an undeniably great trend.