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Hornets buzzing
Philadelphia, PA (Sports Network) - Right now the New Orleans Hornets are known for two things that just don't quit: Anthony Davis' brow and Eric Gordon's knee soreness.

But they are so much more than that.

I'm sure you know about Ryan Anderson, the 6-foot-10 sharpshooter who was acquired from the Orlando Magic in the offseason. It didn't seem like Anderson could shoot from long distance any more than he did last season, but he has, averaging 7.4 3-point attempts per game.

He's made 2.6 3s per game, almost identical to last season's 2.7. That's fifth- best in the league.

Among players making at least two 3-pointers per game, Anderson is one of two averaging more than eight rebounds (Byron Mullens is the other). Anderson is also a strong free throw shooter, making all of his attempts this season and 87.7 percent in 2011-12.

What about the rest of the NOLA gang?

Greivis Vasquez, PG - Vasquez is only shooting 30.6 percent from the field and 64.3 percent from the foul line, so his scoring has been limited, but both of those figures will undoubtedly improve as the season progresses - he's at 41.4 percent from the field and 79.4 percent from the foul line in his career. The important thing is that he's averaging 12.4 shot attempts per game, so the opportunities are there for him to turn it around. What Vasquez does best is create shots for his teammates -- he's averaging 8.8 assists per game through five games. Vasquez also has been strong on the glass, grabbing 4.0 rebounds per game.

Al-Farouq Aminu, SF - Aminu came over with Gordon from the Los Angeles Clippers in the Chris Paul trade but didn't make much of an impact last season. This season has been a different story. Aminu has started all five games and is averaging 12.8 points, 8.6 rebounds, 2.4 assists, 2.0 steals and 1.2 blocks in 33 minutes.

Robin Lopez, C - The less-famous (and shaggier) Lopez twin finally has a starting gig and he's making the most of it. Lopez and Davis have provided the Hornets with a stingy frontcourt, one of the main reasons why the team hasn't allowed 100 points in a game. Lopez is scoring 11.0 points with 6.8 rebounds, 1.0 assists, 0.6 steals and 2.2 blocks per game.

Jason Smith, C - Smith has played just 14 minutes per game off the bench, yet he is averaging 9.2 points. 3.8 rebounds and 1.6 blocks per game while making all 12 of his free throw attempts. Those numbers translate to 31.1 points, 12.8 rebounds and 5.4 blocks per 48 minutes. While Smith's lack of consistent playing time will keep him off fantasy rosters in most leagues, owners should keep the big man on the radar in case an injury gets him more minutes.




Comments? Criticism? Applause? Contact Thomas J. Harrigan at tharrigan@sportsnetwork.com.


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