Ball Don't Lie - NBA

Hornets point guard Chris Paul(notes) will undergo arthroscopic surgery for a cartilage tear in his left knee on Monday and could miss one to two months, sources close to CP3 told Woj over the weekend. Here's what they're saying out in the ether about the unfortunate news ...

John Reid, The Times Picayune: "When contacted by telephone on Sunday night, Paul said he is scheduled to meet with the Hornets' medical staff on Monday, but he would not confirm or deny about having to undergo possible surgery. Hornets spokesman Dennis Rogers said the team would update Paul's status at the shootaround Monday morning at the New Orleans Arena. In Friday's overtime loss to the Chicago Bulls, Paul collided into a camaraman, trying to save an errant pass thrown by David West(notes) and bruised his left knee. After the game, Paul said he initially twisted his left knee in last Wednesday's game against the Golden State Warriors and hit it in the same spot after colliding into the camaraman."

Hornets Hype:  "After that amazing overtime win [Saturday] night ... after winning eight out of 11 on the road in January ... after the way the team came together and showed all that fight ... after scrapping and clawing back into a playoff spot ... I give up.

Bradford Doolittle, BP: Unfiltered: "Will New Orleans honcho Jeff Bower be allowed to sign a point guard to spell Collison? The trade of Bobby Brown(notes) got the Hornets approximately $311,000 under the luxury tax threshhold. If I'm understanding things correctly, each 10-day contract the Hornets dole out to a free-agent point guard with no prior NBA experience would cost about $16,741. So there is enough of a buffer there that Bower could bring in one or two free agents over the next month and wait to see how Paul is progressing. Or he could continue to whittle down his payroll by dealing one of his veterans for a point guard. James Posey(notes) would be attractive to a team making a playoff push and Peterson has an expiring contract. Either way, fantasy owners looking for a boost in raw point guard production would be wise to insert Collison into their lineups post-haste."

Matt Moore, NBA FanHouse: "... let's be honest. This was an aging, incomplete roster that just lost one of the top ten (five?) players in the league, and the man many consider to be the best point guard on the planet, for two months. That's going to hurt, so to speak. Even if the Hornets got to play Mike Conley(notes) every night, they're still dealing with a rookie handling point guard duties, along with two aging wings and new standout big man Aaron Gray(notes). If by standout you mean, 'guy no one can understand why the Hornets traded for him.' It's a long two months in a Western Conference playoff race that features nine teams within four and a half games of the third seed. And without their best overall player, there are likely to be conversations about whether the Hornets should, ahem, re-evaluate their efforts towards the future. But with a roster built to win now, that's equally unlikely as their staying in the playoff race. The Hornets are stock between a rock and the lottery."

Scott Schroeder, Ridiculous Upside: "With the Hornets dealing their third point guard, Bobby Brown, to the Clippers last week in order to avoid the luxury tax, I don't foresee anything more than a couple of different point guards rotating 10-day contracts until Paul is healthy enough to rejoin the Hornets. Since I don't envision many established out of work players (Mike Wilks(notes), Antonio Daniels(notes), Shaun Livingston(notes), etc.) to take what will amount to almost certainly be nothing more than two 10-day contracts, it seems very likely that Darren Collison's(notes) new backup will be a freshly plucked guard from the D-League. [...] Dontell Jefferson(notes) has been the top point guard prospect since rejoining the D-League after the Bobcats cut him in the preseason. The things Jefferson has going for him are his defense, his size (6'5") and his, albeit brief, NBA experience as a call-up for Larry Brown's Bobcats last season. If the guy can get minutes as a rookie for Larry Brown, he can obviously play."

Holly MacKenzie, SLAM"I know what everyone is going to say, but they've got to move those cameramen sitting baseline. They've got cameras with zoom on them, they can be pushed back a bit. I know people pay lots of money for those seats, but dammit, is it going to take a star taking a season-ending injury before they think about it?"

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