Welcome Back Clifford

Bet we do at least see a lot of McDaniels.

He never could the first time he was hear. Ever one was lost.

1 Like

This is ridiculous. I’m so pissed at this I don’t know if I want to support this team anymore

2 Likes

I think shock would be what I’m still in. The gripes about offense - Cliff does believe in playing 4 out when we had Big Al or 5 out at times.

If he had some sustained success while he was gone I think we all would feel better. Now his Orlando teams always played hard, that’s one thing we know we will get.

Everyone is frustrated about his fit with our young guys, but at the very least we know Cliff will have their ass accountable. And giving effort on defense.

I think this time around Cliff will play the young guys - mainly because the roster construction is different and we know the GM is going to push subtly for that.

1 Like

I hope you’re right man.

I am p!ssed that Bouknight handled himself like a f-ing child at college, at the draft and during the season. He is not nearly as innocent as this board likes to make him out to be. But the team desperately needs him. Optimal Bouk equals well rested Terry at the end of the season.

But let’s face it, if Bouk tries the same BS he tried w JB then his @ss will not see the light of day for the rest of the season. If that happens then his fan club up here will NOT blame Bouk, they will blame Cliff.

You guys have already started blaming Cliff and he has not even met Bouk yet because you know that Cliff won’t accept childish crap.

Okay fine, we’ve all seen that movie before. But the FO is NOT as willing to overlook Bouk’s immaturity as evidenced by them trading for a Bouk replacement the YEAR after drafting Bouk. So yes immature Bouk can lead to traded Bouk and his value is not high since Bouk verified everything that caused him to fall to us last year.

The question is, “How smart and mature is Bouk?” Everybody knows who Cliff is - does that include Bouk?

2 Likes

Someone that watched Clifford in ORL tell me, did he change at all?

Can see concern Clifford not just play and throw out kiddies no matter what. Move on especially if tanking to get suggs, franz, & Banchero

If can play, will be in rotation right away…mkg, zeller, kaminsy.

Those who cannot, will not…vonleh, Hairston, monk, Lameba.

He played more young guys but the whole philosophy was the same. He also brought in Michael Carter Williams…

Press Release said that Cliff is “committed to using a fast paced offense” or something like that. If we can have a cliff defense and be top 10 in pace then it will elevate our roster.

Also, I look back on the “lack of development” and, outside of Monk, who in the world could we have elevated beyond what he did?

Kemba improved leaps and bounds under him, if Lamelo buys in I would think he will do the same.

I mean, look at our roster now in comparison to that 48 win team and tell me Cliff doesn’t have a MUCH better situation now.

This is the most young talent Cliff has ever had. I hope he plays Bouk, Kai and Thor but we will see. Also, Cliff is not opposed to starting rookies. He started Bacon A LOT.

Not worried about Williams, if he is as good defensively as everyone says, then Cliff will play him. Not worried about Thor, defensive coaches dream. A little worried about Kai and Bouk getting PT under cliff. Depends on how the next week plays out.

2 Likes

The only hope is that Clifford has a humility to realize that he has to adjust his coaching techniques and philosophies based on two good but not great showings. He is really good at getting a team to be competent but not so great at advanced management and development.

He will do very well with this roster but he needs to change his management to make them really good.

I think a lot of that rings true. I do recognize he’s got more to work with than when arrived here 9 years ago.

I could see him fall in love with Cody (if we re-sign him), Jalen, and PJ. They all play very smart and are defensive plusses. JT could be an easy one to pencil into that group as well. PJ is going to be his Marvin Williams unless we trade him - I fully see that one.

He’s going to play LaMelo and Miles (if we re-sign him) regardless because that will be an organizational directive/agreement. And I could see him getting LaMelo to really dial in defensively - kind of like the Kemba development equivalent of becoming a dead eye shooter. Miles too should really benefit from Clifford’s defensive discipline approach - and I would think Miles is very up for the challenge.

Terry and Gordon will get time because he plays his vets and they are good value-add on the court.

Every time I try conjure a visual of Kelly in a Coach Clifford context, I cannot shake seeing Uncle Phil throwing Jazz out of the house.

The thing about Cliff and rookies is as you say, if they can defend, they’ll play. Mark Williams seems great for a drop coverage coach. And that’s where I do see this going. As well as I can see him in a 1/5 pick and roll (hopefully however we do more than just that offensively) with LaMelo which felt at times like the only Clifford offensive plan. TBH, the Williams/LaMelo pairing seems almost perfect for Clifford.

What I am worried about is that we will get back to “only” running that 1/5 P&R and nothing else. And that we’re just predictable as hell. And that noone is allowed to leak out to take advantage of LaMelo’s (and even Miles’ to a degree) full court passing. If Clif lightens up and allows some flexibility from what we knew earlier, this could be a net positive. If it goes wrong, whooo boy, it will go really wrong at Dunlap speed.

I worry about Kai and Bouk. And I don’t really see Mason being a plus or negative in due time. Maybe the value of retaining our existing assistant coaches is that it provides both a) continuity of some form (offensively) and b) continued development. While I don’t think Coach wasn’t a developmental coach, he just developed only 1 or 2 guys. He will absolutely need to change that even if that means a change of approach w/ assistants and responsibilities.

1 Like

My biggest fear is that he will not, perhaps can not, adapt and best utilize what he has.

I do like the fact that Cliff holds players to account for their D, and they will not see minutes if they don’t perform on that side of the game. Heaven knows, our back court needs a kick in that direction. I was all for him as a defensive assistant.

It’s the creativity, specifically the lack there of, on O that has me worried.

The Hornets need to hire a real PR person. The series of headlines that have been coming out make us look like a clown show, which reinforces the stereotype that Charlotte is home to the biggest population of clowns. And these aren’t the fun clowns that make balloons and squirt you in the face with stale water, these are like an insane posse of clowns from Poltergeist, or It, or John Wayne Gacy.

But with our old friend back like he never left, its done. No take backsies. Any reaction to this series of unfortunate events is fine, we’ll all work it out because we’re addicted to psychological harm and will come running back to the team when the season rolls around. This is the way.

Ok, to heal properly, what are we getting with Uncle Cliffy? He is at least, at minimum, a good coach. A basketball junkie who loves and lives the game, very proud, serious in his work, but also a good people person who likes building solid relationships. Not required, but good traits to have.

As a basketball junkie, I have to assume he watched all the playoff games and trends of the successful teams. The last 4 teams were really good at defense, which is his forte, and I’m sure he’ll try to copy the formula. He is really really good at preparation (first few seasons before the staleness set in). He is good at getting the team focused and playing hard, the kids won’t be throwing food all over the restaurant. He will have good defensive schemes other than allowing the corner 3, which I assume he might have adjusted by this time.

That alone can make a big difference in sustaining success. I assume in interviewing for the job they discussed playing the young guys, since the last guy got fired for that. But our team is made up of young guys, so I don’t think that will be the issue. Gordon is made of glass, so I don’t think he’ll be overplayed. He did help Kemba master the pick and roll, but since he has multiple ball handlers and shooters this go around, I feel like it’ll be spread around more to other playmakers.

He actually likes the 3 ball, but for all of us complaining about the free reign of any and everybody to chuck it up whenever they felt (Oubre, Melo at times), then I think that will be toned down to less than the chaos it was. No Big Al or Big Vuc that we have to force it to in the post either, so he can’t rely on old school offense either.

As for development, I think people often give the head coach too much credit or blame. It has to be a system in place, good assistants who actually have the time to focus on it, and management that wants and allows for that. Well good news, we still have a bunch of our developmental assistants on staff, and Mitch says he wants the youth developed.

I feel like I’ve typed my way through feeling…less bad about the hire. He’s a good coach who took bad talent farther than it should, and this is the best roster he’s had. I’m not as excited as I would be about other hires, but I also don’t see a royal fuck up in his future. I’m going to be bold and say we’ll actually have a better record next year, and if we can actually get stops and rebounds, if we can stay healthy**, then with any improvement of our superstar and secondary players, I think we can get to the 6th.

5 Likes

This is my biggest WTF. Saw where MDA jumped his asking price so we then turn to the big red dog?

Maybe my memory is failing but wasnt he bad about not playing young guys as well?

Really should have paid MDA. He’d have brought out the best of our franchise player…which to me is the most important thing we can do.

3 Likes

I’m 100% with you. MDA would’ve helped Melo take that next step into top tier transcendent talent. He would’ve unlocked the best of Melo.

2 Likes

Seriously! Jordan made the all defensive team 9 times! He was the defensive player of the year. Cliff is a defense 1st, 2nd and 3rd coach. MDA has not realized yet that defense is a part of the game.

The dots are there for us to connect. If it’s true that MDA raised his price then that just p!ssed the boss off even more after he didn’t want to hire him in the 1st place.

Honestly, I’m fine with Clifford. People will bring up his teams’ inconsistency when it came to sustaining a high winning percentage, but I think that was more reflective of the fact that he was able to get his teams to overachieve despite being less talented than their records would suggest. The following seasons were just regressions to the mean. Let’s be honest, the only good player we really had was Kemba (and Al Jefferson for a season or two) when he was here. You do have to factor that in. If he can overachieve with less, you’d think he could overachieve with more, right? This team also has way more upside, making it more likely to sustain growth through multiple seasons.

1 Like

He was a mix bag. He had no problem starting Frank Kaminsky in the playoffs during his rookie year (albeit, due to injury). Frank also averaged 21 MPG that year. So he has played young guys a decent amount before.

Frank was probably his best as a rookie, ironically

1 Like

This would be another check in your ‘luck’ column on the list of wins for this organization if it happens but after digesting the shock of this move I can see a world where we get ‘lucky’ with this. It’s been ugly as hell how we got here. But The bottom line for me is that Clifford is a good coach and he got the most out of less talented teams than we have now, getting them to the playoffs. He was great for Kembas development and could be great for Melo if he buys in. I could see him getting us into the playoffs and you’d have to deem that a success in the short term at least. My concern is i hope he will adapt to playing the youth and in part won’t have a choice because this team is inherently young. I like the roster he has to work with much better than any we gave him in the past and I think there’s still plenty reason to be excited about our future.

3 Likes