SportsCLT: Panthers notch big win, Bobcats get Big Al back

It’s weird having two pro teams in Charlotte winning games at the same time. I don’t really know how to act.

Panthers pull out a close win in San Fran

They finally did it; the Carolina Panthers won a close game — and against a quality opponent to boot. Many folks nationally didn’t think the Panthers could hang with a quality opponent like the 49ers, since most of their wins have come against the scrubs of the NFL, but the Panthers not only proved that they could beat a quality opponent, more importantly, they proved that they could win a close game with their defense.

This week, the Panthers take on the Patriots on Monday Night Football in what is the biggest game since the Panthers’ last playoff appearance against the Arizona Cardinals.

I don’t have to tell you that the Patriots passing attack featuring Tom Brady, Rob Gronkowski, Danny Amendola, Julian Edelman and Kenbrell Thompkins is much more formidable than the likes of the 49ers. It will certainly be a huge test for the defense.

I like the Panthers’ chances in this one; 24-10 Carolina.

This is Big Al’s team

Al Jefferson returned last week as the Bobcats faced the Atlanta Hawks. Big Al was a little rusty, and the Bobcats looked extremely disinterested in playing basketball during the second half.

The ‘Cats then travelled to Boston to take on the Celtics, and despite continued shooting woes by Gerald Henderson and Kemba Walker, the Bobcats managed to pull out a win. Big Al posted 22 points and 11 rebounds in 33 minutes of action. It was clear that the way that the Bobcats will succeed is if the offense flows through Jefferson, unquestionably their best offensive player.

The Bobcats are going to have to get some production from their wing players. Henderson, Taylor and Kidd-Gilchrist have had more down moments than they’ve had good, and it shows. Somehow the Bobcats — who have played good defense for the most part this season — have been pulling out a few wins.

The next few games are against the Cavaliers, Heat and Bulls. Can the ‘Cats come out of this stretch at or around .500?