Lauer Sounds Off: Biz a Bright Spot in Last 2 Games

By Scott Lauer
January 24, 2013

Scott Lauer is the radio play-by-play voice of the Charlotte Bobcats. His column will appear on on Thursdays throughout the season. The opinions expressed here are his own and do not necessarily reflect the views of the Bobcats organization.

When the Bobcats drafted Bismack Biyombo with the seventh overall pick in the 2011 NBA Draft, they were probably hoping the teenager would grow into a rebounder, defender and shot-blocker with the hope that the offense could come around as his career progressed.

After being limited to 18 minutes in Orlando, and at home to Sacramento, Biyombo’s responded with strong games against Houston (nine rebounds, and a career-high-tying seven blocks), and Atlanta (10 rebounds and four blocks). I imagine that this is what was visualized when the Bobcats scouted this Congo native, and former Spanish League player. This is the type of effort that can earn a 20-year-old second-year player more consistent time. There’s something about a blocked shot that can energize a team and a crowd (in home games). Sometimes it triggers a fast break, and that’s what the Bobcats envision as their identity. They are a premiere fast break team; in fact they had 16 fast break points in the first half against Atlanta last night.

Coach Dunlap mentioned before last night’s game against Atlanta that he was going to go through Biyombo in the post in one of the first five possessions of the game, which the Cats did. He acknowledged that Biyombo was able to hit a short corner baseline shot in a game last week, something that the young player hadn’t done. The offensive development is obviously a process that will take time, which will include in-game education. His free-throw shooting has been in rhythm in the month of January, as he’s gone 9-for-10 from the line since the new calendar year began.

He has the ability to be a factor in rebounding, defending, and shot blocking immediately; and it’s been displayed in the last two games. Only one player in the league (Serge Ibaka of Oklahoma City) has more seven-block games in the past two years. Biyombo just logged his third such game against Houston. Coach Dunlap talked about a nuance of the defensive game, whereby against Houston, Biyombo may have been late rotating toward the rim during James Harden drives, resulting in fouls instead of blocks. To a large degree, his production is coming off sheer athleticism now. Ultimately if he can ratchet up his numbers to consistently rest around where they’ve been in the last couple of games, he will be a solid contributor, which is no small feat for a 20-year-old.

Lauer Blog Archive:
1/14/13: Lauer Sounds Off: Seattle Still Deserves a Team
12/27/12: Lauer Sounds Off: 9 Observations Heading Into New Year
12/20/12: Lauer Sounds Off: Kemba Deserves All-Star Consideration
12/13/12: Lauer Sounds Off: Biz a Big Matchup
11/29/12: Lauer Sounds Off: MKG Making a Positive Impact
11/15/12: Lauer Sounds Off: Good to See Cats Getting National Recognition
11/8/12: Lauer Sounds Off: Cats Have Options without Hendo
10/31/12: Lauer Sounds Off: NBA Predictions
10/25/12: Lauer Sounds Off: Kids Have a Blast at Cool School
10/18/12: Lauer Sounds Off: Thoughts Midway Through Preseason
10/11/12: Lauer Sounds Off: Bobcats Visit Charleston
10/4/12: Lauer Sounds Off: Thomas Stronger, Focused
9/27/12: Training Camp In Asheville!
9/20/12: Offseason Moves