Tim Floyd never had a chance when he was coaching the Chicago Bulls.
He’ll have a significantly better unit when he leads the New Orleans Hornets against his former team at New Orleans Arena.
In 1998, Floyd was handed the dubious responsibility of helping the Bulls get through the first few seasons of the post-Jordan era. He went 49-190 before resigning in December 2001, including a 1-6 mark against the then-Charlotte Hornets.
His situation has improved considerably in his second stint as an NBA coach. Floyd’s Hornets have won five of their first six games, including Friday’s impressive 114-95 victory over the Los Angeles Lakers.
Baron Davis had 23 points and 12 assists as the Hornets matched the best six-game start in franchise history despite the absence of injured swingman Jamal Mashburn—New Orleans’ leading scorer last season.
While Floyd may not recognize the latest revamped version of the Bulls, he should be familiar with their losing ways.
Chicago is coming off its fourth blowout loss of the season, an embarrassing 106-85 setback to Philadelphia on Friday that drew boos from the fans at the sold-out United Center.
Tyson Chandler bruised his lower back midway through the second quarter and missed the rest of the game. He is expected to have an MRI on Saturday and likely won’t make the trip to New Orleans.
The Bulls lost to Washington at home by 25 in their opener, got beat at Milwaukee by 30 and got blown out by Houston by 32 at home on Monday.
“It seems like Murphy’s law, everything is going badly,” Chicago forward Eddy Curry said.
Curry had 21 points and nine rebounds and Jamal Crawford scored 19 points for Chicago, which posted a 106-100 road win at Orlando on Wednesday.
“There is a lot of talk about winning, but until you have done it it’s just talk,” Jalen Rose said. “We have to find a way to be competitive every night.”
The Bulls have lost their last 10 road meetings with the Hornets, and 16 of 18 overall in the series.
STANDINGS (through Nov. 6): Bulls - 6th place, 2 GB, Central Division. Hornets - 1st place (tied), Central Division.
TEAM LEADERS: Bulls - Crawford, 16.8 ppg and 5 apg; Chandler, 15.5 rpg. Hornets - Davis, 24.8 ppg and 7 apg; Brown, 10 rpg.
2002-03 SEASON SERIES: Hornets, 3-1.
LAST MEETING: Jan. 17; Hornets, 90-83. At New Orleans, Wesley scored a season-high 34 points to help the Hornets to just their fourth victory in 17 games since Dec. 1.
ROAD/HOME RECORDS: Bulls - 1-1 on the road; Hornets - 2-0 at home.
INJURIES: Bulls - F Pippen (knee); F Marcus Fizer (knee); Roger Mason Jr. (groin); G Jay Williams (pelvis/ankle); F Chandler (back); F Donyell Marshall (leg). Hornets - C James Lang (back) F Mashburn (knee); G Courtney Alexander (Achilles’).