Another night without Al Jefferson proves to be no problem for the Charlotte Bobcats as they defeated the New York Knicks by a final score of 102-97. Coming off of a bad loss to the New Orleans Pelicans, the Cats rebounded tremendously and proved that they can be a competitive team.
The Bobcats were powered by great performances from their starters. While Josh McRoberts and Bismack Biyombo didn’t have the most memorable games, fellow starters Kemba Walker, Gerald Henderson and Michael Kidd-Gilchrist had exceptional games that helped lead the Cats to their second win of the season.
Walker had the best overall performance for the Cats tonight as he once again proved that he can be the primary leader for this young team. Walker scored a team high 25 points tonight to go along with five rebounds and six assists. Though he had a poor shooting night, his teammates made up for the several missed baskets. Henderson went for 18 and eight tonight as he showed that he can still be very effective as a starter.
Kidd-Gilchrist surprised many once again after a poor performance in New Orleans. He had 16 points and eight rebounds in the Bobcats win against the Carmelo Anthony-led Knicks. Wait rebounds? How could I not go without talking more about them tonight as one team really did impress on the rebounding end.
What if I told you the Bobcats out rebounded the Knicks by almost 20 rebounds tonight? Would you believe me? Well, that was a reality in this game as Charlotte had 18 more rebounds than New York, the Cats outscored them 51-33 in total rebounds. I would call that a surprise! Especially without the Bobcats so called “leading rebounder” still out with an injury (Al Jefferson).
7 out of the 10 players on the Cats tonight had 5 or more rebounds. Three players including Kidd-Gilchrist and Henderson, and a pleasant surprise in Jeff Adrien, all led the team with eight total rebounds each.
The Bobcats bench looked solid tonight as we finally got a glimpse of the Jeff Taylor we all want to see. In just 18 minutes off the bench, Taylor had 13 points (5-of-9 shooting) to go along with four rebounds. This is exactly what head coach Steve Clifford wants to see from Taylor, capitalizing early in the quarter or so he gets on the floor per night.
Adrien was my pick for surprise of the night as he got a share of Jefferson’s scattered minutes (still out with a right ankle injury) playing 22 total minutes while collecting a team high eight rebounds, and taking one shot and making it for two points on the night.
Charlotte did a great job of guarding Carmelo as he clearly struggled with his shot against the Bobcats defense shooting a dreadful 10-of-28. Melo still had 32 points , but you could just see that the Bobcats had his number in this game. The Bobcats move to a record of 2-2 and play their next game on Wednesday night against the Toronto Raptors at 7:00 p.m.