Scott using motivational saying to inspireHornets coach Byron Scott is tired of watching his team play poorly in every fifth or sixth outing. With the team's playoff window narrowing with each loss, Scott wrote a motivational saying on a dry erase board inside the locker room before Friday night's game against the Minnesota Timberwolves. It read: "Failure is impossible when (our team) intent is clearly understood.” "He's a coach that believes in this team,” said guard Bobby Jackson. "And what he's saying is if you don't believe in yourself, then you're not going to be successful. "We've got to understand the position we're in, and if we understand that we're going to go out and play hard.” •Paul monitor: Scott said Chris Paul's minutes would begin to increase sometime during the team's three-game road trip, which begins tonight in Houston. Scott said he wanted to limit Paul's minutes while he recovers from an ankle injury. "I think each game he'll go up gradually,” Scott said. "A lot of it just depends on when I'm looking at him how he looks. But as he starts getting more comfortable they'll start to go back up.” •Swat patrol: Center Tyson Chandler recorded at least two blocked shots in 11 of the team's 15 games in January. He had games of three and four blocked shots on two occasions and tied a career-high with seven blocked shots in one game. Before Friday's game, Chandler ranked 15th in the NBA with 1.81 blocks per game. •Beating the best: Last Monday, Minnesota stunned Phoenix 121-112 in Minneapolis to snap the Sun's winning streak at 17. Scott said he saw an upset brewing, especially with it being the last game of a five-game road trip. "I thought they had a chance,” Scott said. "Road trip; last game; team is sitting there waiting on you; they're getting hyped up because they know you've got a great streak going. You might have had a few guys for Phoenix — not a lot — but a few guys thinking about home instead of that last game. "If you beat them (the Suns), you had better beat them. It's not like they're going to give it to you. Minnesota just played a great game and Kevin Garnett (44 points, 11 rebounds) was unbelievable.” Two nights later at home, however, the Timberwolves lost 100-98 Sacramento. "You get so high up for that one game, it's hard to duplicate that,” Scott said. •Have a heart: As part of a "Valentine's at the Hive” promotion for heart awareness, the Hornets will wear red uniforms on Valentine's Day for their game against the Sacramento Kings inside the Ford Center. It will be the first time in the franchise's 19-year history the team has worn red uniforms. Fans are encouraged to wear red. Paul will provide roses to the first 1,000 women through the doors. Eligible bachelors ages 18-25 will be able to participate in the "Win a date with a Honeybee” contest at halftime. The American Heart Association will conduct heart screenings on the concourse during all games throughout February, which is "Heart Awareness Month.” •Usher knocked down: During a timeout early in the second quarter, fans inadvertantly collided with a female usher during a ball giveaway. She was knocked to the court, hitting the back of her head. The game was delayed eight minutes while arena and Hornets medical staff tended to her. According to Hornets officials, the unidentified usher was taken to the hospital as a precautionary measure, treated and released. By Darnell Mayberry and John Rohde
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Chris Paul goes to the basket in front of teammates Desmond Mason, left, and Rasual Butler and Randy Foye of the Timberwolves on Friday. BY BRYAN TERRY, THE OKLAHOMAN