It was a relatively low-scoring effort. But the Hornets showed they can win with offense and defense as their new owner, Tom Benson, watched from his front-row seats. The 88-75 home victory on April 15 was the best victory the Hornets had all season, if you're talking in terms of the records of the teams they defeated.
The Grizzlies ended 2012 with a 41-25 record and earned the Western Conference's No. 4 playoff seed. They generally used a strong effort from their two big men Marc Gasol and Zach Randolph and combined it with the electric scoring abilities of Rudy Gay and OJ Mayo.
On this night, Gay was the only one who did anything noteworthy (24 points on 9-17 shooting). No other Grizzly scored more than 11 points.
That's because the Hornets proved they are a great defensive team with also great scoring balance. EG had 18 points, Carl Landry had 16 off the bench, Jason Smith had 14 and Al-Farouq Aminu had 12 to lead the Hornets to victory.
Greivis Vasquez filled in nicely at point guard for the injured Jarrett Jack, dishing out nine assists while managing an important eight points.
That group, with the possible exception of Carl Landry, make up the likely core of the future, of course in addition to whichever two players the Hornets draft in the first round of the upcoming NBA Draft.