Monday , Mar , 19 , 2007 C.Y. Ellis

Paul is the key to Hornets run at the postseason

(Sports Network) – If the New Orleans/Oklahoma City Hornets (29-37) are
going to make the playoffs, Chris Paul needs to step up. Paul is averaging
17.4 points and a team-best 8.8 assists this season.

Paul has scored 20 or more points in three straight contests for the
Hornets. The Wake Forest product is averaging 22.0 points and 9.3 assists
during that stretch

New Orleans/Oklahoma Hornets tries to get back on the winning track on Monday,
as it welcomes the Boston Celtics to the Ford Center. It is the second and
final meeting of the campaign between the clubs. On November 1st, Paul
collected 20 points, seven rebounds 10 assists to lead the Hornets over
Boston, 91-87, at TD Banknorth Garden. The Hornets snapped a four-game series
losing streak with the victory.

Boston has won two straight after losing its last three at the Hornets.

The Hornets trail the Golden State Warriors by two games for the eighth and
final playoff berth in the Western Conference.

New Orleans/Oklahoma City returns home after going 1-1 on a two-game road
trip. On Saturday, Gilbert Arenas scored 30 points and dished out 11 assists
to lead the Washington Wizards to a 125-103 rout of the Hornets at the Verizon
Center.

Paul scored 21 points and dished out eight assists in the loss to Washington,
while David West registered 17 points and eight rebounds for the Hornets, who
have dropped seven of their last eight games overall.

The Hornets are 19-13 as the host this season. They will visit the Memphis
Grizzlies on Tuesday at the FedExForum. New Orleans/Oklahoma City is 2-1
against the Grizzlies this season.

Tyson Chandler has collected double-digits in rebounds in three straight
and 24 of 25 outings. The 7-1 Chandler is averaging 8.9 points and a team-
best 12.4 rebounds in 64 contests this season.

The Hornets are scheduled to host nine of their final 16 games. They will
visit Memphis, San Antonio, Milwaukee, Minnesota, Houston, Sacramento and the
Clippers in their final road contests of the season.

NOH