Well, that preseason seemed short. The Bobcats lost 92-75 in their second preseason game to the Atlanta Hawks, leaving them with an admirable .500 preseason record. Because preseason games hold almost no meaning, this won't be a full recap. But I'm intrigued by the team's intriguing rookies and new players, and I assume you're also intrigued. So after the jump I'll provide the most intriguing analysis of a preseason game in the history of intriguing analyses.
My primary interest in this game stemmed from wanting to see how individual players would perform, as not enough time has yet passed to truly understand how personnel and schemes will be collectively implemented.
D.J. Augustin: I typically think of Augustin as a "B" player, someone who'll provide decent starting minutes on a nightly basis and not much else. Augustin was that player that night, effectively getting to the basket and providing 9 points and three assists in 23 minutes. Grade: B
Gerald Henderson: This wasn't Hendo's best game, as he was in foul trouble and had little offensive impact in 23 minutes. I'm not too worried about it, but this wasn't a good showing. Grade: C
Corey Maggette: I was actually pleasantly surprised by how well Maggette performed offensively tonight. He was firing on all Maggette cylinders, managing to earn ten free throws and shoot ten times in only 26 minutes. If he's as effective as he was tonight at capitalizing on those opportunities (18 points in 26 minutes along with five rebounds and five assists), I'll have few complaints. Grade: A-
Boris Diaw: He played poorly and had little effect in 24 minutes. The three turnovers didn't help. Grade: C
Matt Carroll: Carroll went through alternating cold and hot streaks, but made both of his three-pointers and didn't inhibit offensive movement. Grade: B
DeSagana Diop: He rebounded well (seven rebounds in only 14 minutes), but I was otherwise pretty unenthused by his performance. I would advise he refrains from shooting jump shots. Grade: B-
Kemba Walker: Kemba isn't scoring efficiently quite yet (eight points on 11 shots), but I've been pretty encouraged by his early performances. His first step is impeccable and he's passed competently. He'll continue to improve and learn the offense quickly as the season continues. I expect good things. Grade: B
Bismack Biyombo: It's important that fans take every early Biyombo performance with a grain of salt. He's still learning, and this was his first game after only recently joining the team. I'll say this: Biyombo will be an elite shot blocker in the NBA. That skill was present Thursday night. Though he only had two rebounds in 16 minutes, his instincts to rebound seemed present. As for his offensive night, Biyombo didn't take a shot (he had one point on two free throws) and was largely uninvolved in the offense. That part of the NBA game will be a learning process for Biyombo, but I'm hopeful. He's aware of his own weaknesses and seems determined to fix them. We'll know more after a plethora of regular season games have passed. Grade: B
Derrick Brown: Brown continues to perform solidly and pass admirably. Grade: B+
Byron Mullens: I can't say I love Mullens's game, but he played decently tonight and showed an ability to draw fouls. Grade: B+
Melvin Ely: He scored four points in ten minutes! Grade: B-
The regular season is only a few days away, and I'm excited to watch games that actually mean something. This may not be the most successful season in Bobcats' history, but I expect it'll be a fun one.