It’s been the NBA season, but we’re still dealing with the aftermath of a devastating storm that knocked out the game on Sunday night.
The Charlotte Hornets’ season ended when they fell to the Orlando Magic 111-102 in overtime.
The team was eliminated from the playoffs.
But for all the losses, there were still some positives for the Hornets.
They’re a team that can hang with the best in the league and still find a way to win, even if it’s not a perfect year.
The Hornets were a top-five team heading into the season and are still going strong, winning four of their last five.
The Hornets are in a position to compete for the East, and they’ve been winning consistently for the past couple of years.
So far this year, they’ve won three straight games against the Heat, Knicks and Spurs.
They’ve also been one of the league’s best teams against teams with below-average records.
Charlotte was also a top seed heading into its first season in the playoffs and a win tonight will give them an even greater confidence boost heading into next year.
So how does a team like Charlotte do it?
Let’s take a look at how the Hornets’ roster has evolved since last season.
The Charlotte Hornets are a team built around one player: Kemba Walker.
Walker has been one the league lead rebounders in each of the last three seasons, averaging 10.2 per game this season.
The only team in the NBA with more rebounds per game is the Warriors with 13.9.
In the NBA, it is also the league leader in assists, averaging 6.2.
Walker has been an incredible rebounder in the clutch, averaging 9.4 rebounds per contest this season, and the team has scored more points per 100 possessions in the fourth quarter than any other team in league history.
But he’s also been a key contributor for the team in clutch situations this year.
They are currently one of only two teams in the East with more fourth-quarter field goals than points in the final period.
In those situations, Walker is averaging a career-high of 2.4 points per possession.
He’s also averaging 7.3 rebounds per possession in those situations.
The best part?
The Hornets have a chance to go as far as the playoffs if they don’t make the playoffs again.
The best thing for the Charlotte Hornets is that Walker has shown he can rebound, and his defensive ability should keep him safe from getting fouled.
The worst thing is that he’s been a complete liability offensively, averaging only 8.7 points per game.
But the Hornets are definitely better defensively with Walker in the lineup than without him.
This is where Walker comes in.
His defensive rebounding ability has been a huge part of the Hornets success.
Walker is the only player in the entire NBA with an average of 10.0 defensive rebounds per 100 defensive possessions this season and is the third-best rebounder among players averaging at least 20 minutes per game (behind Kevin Love and LeBron James).
Walker has also shown that he can guard multiple positions, making him an ideal fit for the Triangle offense.
The Warriors have used Walker on the wing and he’s worked well for them, scoring 11.3 points per night on the year.
He can guard almost any position on the floor.
The problem with Kemba is that his rebounding numbers are a bit inconsistent.
He has averaged 5.7 rebounds per 120 defensive possessions and has also struggled to stay on the court for more than 40 minutes per contest.
He was an All-Star last season and the NBA’s best rebounding player in 2015-16, but he has averaged just 5.0 rebounds per 45 minutes this season with the Hornets, a number that should decline.
Kemba’s defensive ability and rebounding should help the Hornets make up ground against teams like the Spurs and Heat.
However, this is where things get a little tricky.
The one thing Kemba can do well is get into the paint and attack the rim.
Kempa also is a good rebounder when he has the ball on the rim, averaging 8.4 defensive rebounds in those instances.
He should be able to do the same against more physical opponents, but the Hornets have had some struggles against the more physical teams like Orlando and the Miami Heat.
Walker is a great rebounder and can also defend the rim well.
But his defensive rebanding is a bit below average.
He also is averaging only 7.6 defensive rebounds on the season, a figure that is below average for a big man.
The good news is that the Hornets should be a bit better defensively this year if Walker plays at his best.
The other big issue is Kemba has a tendency to shoot poorly from the field.
Kembamba has been terrible from the floor and has only made one of his eight shots in the restricted area.
The problem with this is that Kemba shot a combined 38.5 percent