As we await word on David West‘s MRI results, we fear the worst. A torn ligament would end West’s season and make the Hornets short-handed as they look to clinch a playoff spot in the final 2 1/2 weeks of the season.
According to NBA.com StatsCube, the Hornets have been a better offensive team with West on the floor and a better defensive team with him on the bench.
Hornets efficiency, 2010-11
|West on/off||MIN||Pace||Off. Eff.||Def. Eff.||Diff.|
|West on floor||2450||90.6||105.7||102.4||+3.3|
|West off floor||1034||92.3||99.3||98.9||+0.3|
Pace = Possessions per 48 minutes
Off. Eff. = Points scored per 100 possessions
Def. Eff. = Points allowed per 100 possessions
The defensive numbers are somewhat encouraging, but we have to remember that, when West is on the bench, the Hornets are likely defending against second units that are weaker offensively.
Obviously, the trade the Hornets made at the deadline looks more important now. Marcus Thornton may be putting up big numbers in Sacramento, but Carl Landry makes for a somewhat suitable replacement at power forward with West out.
Landry’s numbers with the Hornets compare pretty well with West’s numbers for the season…
|Landry (with NOH)||13||284||17.3||53.8%||57.9%||18.4%||.323||7.8%||9.2%||13.06|
eFG% = (FGM + (3PM*0.5))/ FGA
TS% = Points / (2 x (FGA + (.44 x FTA)))
Usg%. = Percentage of possessions used while on the floor
FTA Rate = FTA/FGA
OREB% = Percentage of available offensive rebounds grabbed while on the floor
DREB% = Percentage of available defensive rebounds grabbed while on the floor
TORatio = Turnovers per 100 possessions used
Defensive rebounding is the area where Landry falls short, but Landry has been a slightly more efficient scorer in his short time with New Orleans. And the Hornets’ offensive efficiency with Landry on the floor is encouraging…
Hornets post-trade efficiency, 2010-11
|Landry on/off||MIN||Pace||Off. Eff.||Def. Eff.||Diff.|
|Landry on floor||284||90.7||107.4||103.5||+3.8|
|Landry off floor||426||92.4||104.3||103.6||+0.7|
Of Landry’s 284 minutes with the Hornets, 120 were played with West. And the Hornets were actually pretty awful with the two of them together, scoring just 99.7 points per 100 possessions, and allowing 115.3. That’s bad offense and atrocious defense.
At this point, West has been a part of each of the Hornets’ 10 most-used lineups, including a starting lineup — Chris Paul, Marco Belinelli, Trevor Ariza, West and Emeka Okafor — that has played 882 minutes together. Interestingly, coach Monty Williams has yet to use a lineup where Landry replaces West and plays with the other four starters.
Landry has played with each of the other four starters, just not with them all together.
Hornets post-trade efficiency with Landry on floor
|Landry with||MIN||Pace||Off. Eff.||Def. Eff.||Diff.|
Of those 159 minutes Landry has played with Paul, 77 have come with West on the floor as well. And as noted above, the Hornets’ defense has been awful with the two power forwards together. Playing more minutes between Okafor and Ariza, Landry’s defensive numbers are sure to improve, as long as the Hornets can make up for the rebounds they’re losing with West out.
So all is not lost for the Hornets should West be done for the season. Replace him with Landry and they still have a solid lineup. Obviously though, New Orleans will lose the frontline depth they boasted when they acquired him. More so than Landry, it’s time for Aaron Gray or Jason Smith to step up.