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New Orleans Hornets Might Keep Three Point Guards, But Will It Be Mustafa Or Strawberry As The Third?

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There really hasn't been much to talk about this week as I've engulfed myself in NBA 2k11, my return to rec league basketball and training for something else that may or may not be happening on October 23 (suspenseful, I know).

Fortunately, John Reid from my favorite newspaper named the Times Picayune (he's in Nola, baby) has a couple of fun updates on players the D-League faithful are probably interested in and where they sit with the New Orleans Hornets in trying to win their training camp battles.

Hoping to maintain depth even if injuries occur, New Orleans Hornets Coach Monty Williams said he's considering keeping three point guards on the roster for the regular season.

While Chris Paul is the starter, he could be one of three point guards on the New Orleans Hornets roster.
After veteran Jannero Pargo was waived Tuesday, Paul, Willie Green, D.J. Strawberry and Mustafa Shakur are the remaining point guards on the team.

"You would like to have three point guards that could step right in case a guy goes down,'' Williams said.

Despite Shakur's adequate performance in Saturday's intrasquad scrimmage at the New Orleans Arena, Williams said he remains a work in progress.

"He's a young guy who just came out of the D-League, and for me to put that kind of pressure on him right away, I don't think that would be fair,'' Williams said of Shakur.

If I'm reading that quote correctly, Strawberry seems to be the front-runner ahead of Shakur (unless they do something NewOrleansy and bring back Jannero Pargo, of course).  I don't have a problem with that, really, except that I don't think Green or Strawberry are better point guards than Shakur, even though they are probably better players.

Also of note, Pops Mensah-Bonsu and Joe Alexander are battling for the right to back-up David West and it seems, well, you'll have to hit the jump to find out what's going on in that battle.

Williams said the backup power forward spot is virtually even between Joe Alexander and Pops Mensah-Bonsu.

Alexander has showed athleticism and scoring ability in the post, and Mensah-Bonsu has been an exceptional rebounder.

"I couldn't say one is ahead of the other right now,'' Williams said. "They both have done a lot of good stuff.''
In Saturday's scrimmage, Alexander played the most minutes at the position and made a nice spin move to beat starter David West for a layup.

"It just has been about learning this system, and that's all I've been trying to work on,'' said Alexander, a second-year player from West Virginia.

Alexander said it is the first time that he has played exclusively at power forward. In 2008, Alexander was selected as the eighth overall pick in the NBA draft by the Milwaukee Bucks, who traded him to the Chicago Bulls last season.

This confounds me. If Joe Alexander is a better power forward than Pops Mensah-Bonsu, well, he's not so luckily I don't have to finish that sentence.  Unless, of course, Monty Williams definition of a power forward is really athletic white dude with his greatest talent being that he's athletic and he can jump high which basically just means he's athletic and thus isn't really all that talented.

Hopefully Mensah-Bonsu is just taking it easy early in camp and will leap ahead of the competition before the Hornets do something drastic.