By Matt Rochinski
October 8, 2012
Michael Kidd-Gilchrist vs. Anthony Davis
The top two picks in the 2012 NBA Draft – Anthony Davis (No.1, Hornets) and Michael Kidd-Gilchrist (No. 2, Bobcats) will match up for the first time in the regular season on November 9 in New Orleans, but fans will have the chance to see them play in back-to-back preseason games on October 9 in New Orleans and October 11 in North Charleston, South Carolina… Davis and Kidd-Gilchrist both entered the 2012 NBA Draft after leading Kentucky to an NCAA Championship in their freshman season… MKG played a key part in the Cats first preseason win, hitting a driving layup down the left baseline that was followed by a clutch Byron Mullens trey that pushed the Cats advantage to 93-82 with 2:50 remaining on their way to a 100-88 win over Washington… Kidd-Gilchrist finished with 12 points, six rebounds and three steals in his Bobcats debut… Anthony Davis also had a solid first game with eight points and eight rebounds in 24 minutes… While these two probably won’t be matched up with one another on the court, taking the court together will be a special moment for them. As MKG told me on Bobcats Media Day, the person he’s most looking forward to playing against in the NBA is Davis.
SCOUTING THE BOBCATS (1-0 Preseason)
The Bobcats opened their preseason slate with a 100-88 win over Washington on October 7 at Time Warner Cable Arena®… Cats captain Gerald Henderson paced Charlotte with 19 points and added four rebounds and three assists… Henderson also got to the line nine times, connecting on six of those attempts… New Head Coach Mike Dunlap wants the Bobcats to get the ball into the paint this season, where they can convert on higher percentage shots, kick the ball out for an open 3-pointer or get to the free-throw line. Charlotte had no problem with the latter in the preseason opener, taking 46 freebies to the Wizards 21… A total of 10 Bobcats scored against Washington, with Henderson, Byron Mullens (18), Ben Gordon (16), Ramon Sessions (14) and Michael Kidd-Gilchrist (12) hitting double digits… All of the Cats new additions scored. Free agent signees Gordon, Sessions and Brendan Haywood (4) combined for 34 points, while rookies MKG and Jeffery Taylor (1) totaled 13 more.
SCOUTING THE HORNETS (1-0 Preseason)
The Hornets have a lot of new faces, led by 2012 first round draft picks Anthony Davis and guard Austin Rivers (No. 10 overall). Both impressed in their preseason debut on October 7 in Mexico City, leading New Orleans back from a 66-54 deficit entering the fourth quarter to take an 85-80 victory over the Orlando Magic. Davis finished with eight points and eight rebounds, while Rivers led all Hornets starters with 10 points… Another rookie also stepped up for New Orleans in Mexico City, as guard Brian Roberts (undrafted out of Dayton) scored a game-high 17 points and connected on three treys in the comeback… Forward Lance Thomas (10 points) was the only other Hornet to score in double digits… Newcomers Ryan Anderson (1 of 11) and Robin Lopez (0 of 4) struggled to find their shots, combining to go 1 of 15 from the field. More is expected out of them in New Orleans this season.
The Bobcats will be in New Orleans for an 8 p.m. tip on October 9 at New Orleans Arena before both teams head to the North Charleston Coliseum in Charleston, SC Amway Arena for a 7:30 p.m. tipoff on October 11… Listen to both games on WFNZ and don’t forget to join the chat this Friday on bobcats.com.