The 2000’s was a decade of change for the Hornets. In the span of a decade, the Hornets moved from Charlotte to New Orleans and changed from the Eastern Conference to the Western Conference. They even made a short layover in Oklahoma City after Hurricane Katrina devastated the New Orleans area. A bunch of change, but yet things are still the same for the Hornets franchise. Through the 2000’s, they remained a playoff caliber team, but not quite a championship caliber team. They are hoping that the likes of Chris Paul and David West can carry them to that next plateau in the upcoming decade. Here are the best five New Orleans Hornets from 2001-2010. (Only accomplishments and stats while playing for the New Orleans Hornets from 2001-2010 were considered.)
1. Chris Paul
Talk about a no-brainer. Is there anybody out there at all that doesn’t think that the greatest Hornets player of the past decade was CP3? If so, please check with your family physician to see if you qualify for a free CAT scan. Saying that Chris Paul is one of the best young players in the NBA just doesn’t seem to justify just how great he has been since the Hornets made him the fourth overall pick in the 2005 NBA Draft. Chris Paul is already shaping up to be one of the best point guards in NBA History. No, I’m not going crazy. Well, not any crazier than I have been all my life anyways. I know Chris Paul has only played in the NBA for five seasons, but let’s look at what he has already accomplished. His accolades include three All-Star teams, 2 All-NBA teams, 2 NBA All-Defensive teams, and an NBA Rookie of the Year Award. He has already had three seasons with more than 10 assists per game and became the first player in NBA history to lead the NBA for consecutive seasons in assists and steals. I could keep going, but this is a team article, not just a “let me tell how great CP3 really is article.”
2. Jamal Mashburn
Monster Mash, as he became known from his days dominating the college hardwood for Kentucky, played for the Hornets for last four seasons of his NBA career. He averaged over 20 points per game in all four seasons and made his only NBA All-Star team in 2003. He was traded to the 76’ers after the 2004 season, but could not overcome his chronic knee problems to ever get in a game with them.
3. David West
The Hornets drafted West 18th overall in the 2003 NBA Draft. He is one of the most solid fundamental big men in the game today. He has played seven seasons with the Hornets and has averaged 17 or more points and over 7 rebounds per game in each of the last five seasons. He was named an All-Star in 2008 and 2009.
4. Baron Davis
Davis played 4 ½ seasons in the 2000’s with the Hornets. The point guard made two Western Conference All-Star Teams in that span, one in 2002 and the second in 2004. His best season with the Hornets came in 2003-04, when he averaged 22.9 points, 7.5 assists, 4.3 rebounds and 2.4 steals per game.
5. PJ Brown
Brown played six seasons with the Hornets and did for them the same thing he has done throughout his whole career; average 9-11 points scored and 7-9 rebounds per game. Brown hung his hat as a hard-working player that played great defense.