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News » BYE-RON'S OUT


BYE-RON'S OUT


BYE-RON'S OUTTO BEE, or not to Bee.

Hornets superiors maintain Byron Scott became the NBA's first head coaching casualty yesterday because the offensive predictably, stagnation and susceptibility to being bullied so evident in last season's first-round playoff exit in five mostly non-competitive games to the Nuggets carried over into the preseason. And it then carried over into the 3-6 regular season, punctuated by Wednesday night's 124-104 phlogging in Phoenix.

Though all of the above is indisputable, what sealed Bye-Ron's fate in the Bayou; New Orleans was the 1-8 Knicks' sole conquest.

Somebody had to pay for such barefaced ignominy, because the Hornets are over the luxury tax and optionless, 10 out of 10 certified accountants surveyed fingered Scott for sacrifice.

Don Nelson can never say he wasn't forewarned. His Golden State "What, Me" Warriors, easy marks five out of seven times so far, have planned a home invasion tonight of Madison Square Garden.

Not that anybody expected the Woes to accomplish anything worthwhile this season. . . . Not after the way management radically has renovated a second-round playoff roster over the last two seasons, leading to several trade demands, the latest being Stephon Jackson. Nelson significantly influenced those alterations and is notorious for going out of his way to provoke the wrath of players - Mickael Pietrus, Jamal Crawford and Al Harrington, to pinpoint some.

"Had I stayed with the Warriors any longer I felt for sure he would have ended my NBA career," Harrington said to me last month.

Patrick Ewing was convinced Nelson was ruining his career in 1995-96 when the new coach in town decided the offense would run through Anthony Mason. Seething for months at the perceived downgrading, Ewing barged into the office of Knicks executive Ernie Grunfeld and heatedly insisted Nelson be fired; at the time, the team was 34-25, a record that would have gotten Isiah Thomas a life-long contract with Camp Cablevision.

I wouldn't be surprised to learn one day that Jeff Van Gundy helped stage the coup that elevated the anonymous assistant to sideline supervisor. Even if Van Gundy was DNA free, he sure as hell cost Grunfeld his job by undermining his authority and name with a faction of the media, Dave Checketts and his bosses - a funny way to repay someone who unshackled you from oblivion.

Returning to Nelson, of late it appears he loves to operate with no expectations. Setting the Limbo bar as low as it can go eliminates the unfailing dismissal component of disappointment. At the same time, any kind of success enhances his genius measure in the minds of owner Christopher Cohan and president Robert Rowell.

Bye-Ron's Hornets, on the other hand, were gauging themselves against the league's lords - the Spurs, Celtics, Lakers and Suns. New Orleans lost to the quartet by a combined 63 points.

You could smell the setup from here. Before the season began it had become clear Scott would be the designated scapegoat the moment the Hornets' record remotely approached wretched. With that opening schedule and the Hornets' un-rectified limitations at every position not manned by Chris Paul (I take that back; he has no suitable understudy) it could not possibly have turned out any other way.

Falling to the Knicks finalized Bye-Ron's eventual doom. It just took four more games for Hornets owner George Shinn and his son, Chad, to make the improper funeral arrangements.

It's almost amusing, poetic justice, I suppose, that Hornets general manager Jeff Bower was toe-tagged to replace Bye-Ron because he's the person who failed to fix what was painfully, plainly broken.

Upper management proclaimed yesterday, if the mud slide isn't reversed Bower will be held accountable for assembling, with several exemptions, a cast of overpaid non-athletic, un-complementary, inferior ball handling pushovers.

Reaching into their archives to hire Bulls-Hornets-USC outcast Tim "Flim-Flam" Floyd as Bower's first assistant can't help but serve as further proof to Paul the front office is incapable of judging integrity and knows little about constructing team chemistry.

Paul is playing out of his mind- averaging 26.1 points (9th in the league) and 9.3 assists (3rd) vs. 2.2 turnovers, while shooting 62 percent from the field (9th) and leading the league from three (65 percent), but those on the scene say his frustration level is soaring. He constantly is barking at teammates on the court and from the bench.

Yes, Paul is locked into the Hornets for two more years after this, but what is company line is management going to sell him when he reads about LeBron James and Dwayne Wade going here or there . . . and they play for conscientious organizations? He has to be scratching his head in stupefaction: "These are our leaders?!"

The league gets lucky this Friday the 13th . . . with the Knicks and Nyets (at Orlando) in action.

Staph correspondent Frank Drucker went for an up-close-and-personal visit to the I-Nod Center Wednesday, where the Nyets again gave it the ol' barber college try.

Despite being shorthanded - "I've seen window display people on Fifth Avenue dress more men" - the Nyets found themselves up a deuce with 1:26 to go.

Then, the familiar formula of missed shots, bad passes and no help from the referees clotted, and the Nyets again played well enough to lose.

0-and-8.

Come back, Bye-Ron. Almost all is forgiven.


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Author: Fox Sports
Author's Website: http://www.foxsports.com
Added: November 14, 2009

 

 
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