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Charlotte Bobcats

Division: SoutheastGM: Rod HigginsHead Coach: Mike Dunlap
2011-12: 7-59 (15th in East)vs. division 1-14
Points87.0 (30th)
Rebounds39.0 (29th)
Assists20.1 (18th)
Opp Pts100.9 (27th)

Last Season

There isn't much to say about a team that managed only seven wins last season. In their defence, it was a lockout-shortened year, but that is still no excuse for winning only one game within their division all season.

The Bobcats ended the year in embarassing fashion, losing 23-straight games.

To make matters worse, the Bobcats didn't even have the good fortune of winning the NBA Draft Lottery, causing them to miss out on top prospect Anthony Davis. Things can only get better from here... they hope.

Who's In/Who's Out

Key Additions: C Brendan Haywood, G Ramon Sessions
Key Losses: G D.J. Augustin, F Corey Maggette, F Jamario Moon, F Eduardo Najera
DRAFTED
Round 1 (2nd overall) - SF Michael Kidd-Gilchrist - Kentucky

Analysis: Kidd-Gilchrist wasn't even the best player on his college team, but was still the second player selected overall in the NBA Draft. With one of the best work ethics of any rookie, MKG is almost guaranteed to become a solid pro. The biggest question about his game will be whether he develop into the elite player the Bobcats need.

Round 2 (31st overall). SF Jeff Taylor - Vanderbilt

Analysis: Taylor may take time to put his game together at the next level, once he realizes he won't be able to simply rely on his athleticism anymore. Taylor can attack the basket extremely well, but needs to improve his outside shot.


Season Outlook

The Good

Kidd Can Play

The Bobcats are hoping that second overall pick Michael Kidd-Gilchrist can help turn things around.

Young Core - Michael Kidd-Gilchrist and Jeff Taylor join Kemba Walker, Bismack Biyombo, and B.J. Mullens, forming a group of talented youngsters that can help move the Bobcats away from the bottom of the standings. Their presence gives the team hope for the future, but they will need to come into their own quickly if they plan on helping the team make great strides this year.

Veteran Additions - The Bobcats acquired Ben Gordon, Ramon Sessions and Brendan Haywood, who will help take some of the pressure off of the young group. Gordon will challenge Gerald Henderson as the team's top scoring option and Sessions will help facilitate the offence from the point, at least at the beginning of the season.

The Bad

One Year Removed - It's hard to forget just how bad the Bobcats were last season. No matter what the front office has done to distance itself from last year's team, the fact remains that they had one of the worst winning percentages in NBA history and they will be a longshot to contend for even the eighth spot in the post-season.

Get ready for the season with the latest from TSN.ca.

Power Rankings

30
The Bobcats should be used to the bottom by now.

Player Projections

On a bad team without a star, Kemba Walker is the most appealing at 81st overall.

Growing Pains - Not only is the roster full of youth, but their new head coach Mike Dunlap has come from being an interim head coach in the NCAA. Dunlap lacks head coach experience at the pro level and that will only serve to limit the Bobcats even more.

X-Factor: Ben Gordon
Gordon has the ability to average 20 points a night, a feat he accomplished twice while playing for the Chicago Bulls. In Detroit, Gordon's minutes and attempts were down and because of that his points per game suffered. The Bobcats need someone to consistenty put the ball in the basket and if Gordon can show that same scoring prowess he once had, he could flourish in Charlotte.

What To Expect
The Bobcats are likely in for a season of growing pains and that means another year outside of the playoff picture. The most important aspect to focus on for the Bobcats is ensuring their young talent develops properly. If things fall into place and their rookies are able to contribute right away, the Charlotte may move out of the NBA's basement, but 20 wins would be a huge accomplishment in Dunlap's first season.

Depth Chart

Power Forward

Bismack Biyombo
Tyrus Thomas

Center

Brendan Haywood
Byron Mullens
DeSagana Diop

Small Forward

Michael Kidd-Gilchrist
Jeffery Taylor

Shooting Guard

Ben Gordon
Gerald Henderson
Reggie Williams

Point Guard

Ramon Sessions
Kemba Walker

Tim Chisholm's Offseason Grade

No matter how much you like Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, the Bobcats are still going to be one of the worst clubs in the league this season.

They tanked and tanked hard last year in an an attempt to land Anthony Davis in the draft and failed, netting his Kentucky teammate instead. Bringing in the rapidly decaying Ben Gordon and Brendan Haywood aren't going to help matters much, either.

Unless Kemba Walker and Bismack Biyombo have breakout sophomore campaigns, expect Charlotte to keep scraping the NBA's seabed.

Grade: D

Tipping Off

The Bobcats open their season hosting the Pacers.

Nov. 2 7pm et PacersvsBobcats
Next 4 games
Nov.3 @ DAL 8:30pm et
Nov. 7 vs PHX 7pm et
Nov. 9 @ NO 8pm et
Nov. 10 vs DAL 7:30pm et



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