Season in review: Darius Songaila

Monday, April 26, 2010
By: Jim Eichenhofer, Hornets.com

As Darius Songaila describes it, injuries are something that comes with the territory in basketball, especially during the NBA’s marathon-like, 82-game schedule. That may be the case, but Songaila’s teams still have had an incredibly poor run of bad health over the past two seasons. After reaching the playoffs four consecutive years, the 2008-09 Washington Wizards were ravaged by injuries, causing them to go just 19-63, a 24-game drop-off from the previous season.

Following a trade to New Orleans, Songaila figured to stand a fairly good chance of returning to the NBA playoffs, but injuries to key players such as Chris Paul and Peja Stojakovic factored into a 12-win decrease and a 37-45 mark. The 2009-10 Hornets missed the postseason, after back-to-back appearances in 2008 and 2009.
When I sat down with Songaila near the end of the season to discuss what transpired, the seven-year veteran didn’t want to spend much time discussing his own impact or accomplishments, saying that his view of success is entirely tied to team objectives.
Songaila is the fourth of 12 season-review player articles on Hornets.com.

The following are a few other things he had to say about the season that didn’t make it into the recap.
On team injuries:
“That’s just part of basketball. Injuries are going to happen. It seemed like we hit our stride in January and we were doing well, but then injuries started happening. But it’s part of the game. You have to do the best job you can to prepare yourself to play.”

On the Hornets’ potential:
“You have to look at what we did when we were at our best and everyone was healthy. After the coaching change, once we got things going, by December and January, we were going pretty well until the injuries started piling up. You have to look at when we were at full health and full force – those stretches were pretty good.
“We had a good home record, and then we started to win games on the road. We put together a pretty good West Coast trip. We bounced back from the 11th spot to the eighth spot and were playing well. Then a few guys got hurt.”