Notebook: Hornets 92, Suns 90

Posted Apr 8, 2013 2:14 AM

Mike Tulumello, for

THE FACTS: Two lottery-bound teams, and their fans, got to see what a lottery prize looks like Sunday night in Phoenix.

Anthony Davis, the No. 1 pick in the 2012 draft, scored a game-high 20 points as the New Orleans Hornets came from behind and rolled to a 95-92 win over the Suns.

Davis took just 10 shots in scoring 20 (or more) for the second straight game, a first for him.

"My teammates were finding me," Davis said.

"He took one bad shot, a crazy fade-away," coach Monty Williams said. "Otherwise, he was really efficient ... AD running the floor solves a lot of problems for our offense."

The Hornets, who have won five of their last nine, moved to 27-50 with the win. They hadn't won a road game since Feb. 11 at Detroit.

The Suns (23-54) lost their ninth straight and a franchise-record seventh in a row at home.

The game figured to be perhaps the Suns' last, best chance to win a game this season. They face a tough final five games (four on the road), meaning they could well end the season on a 14-game losing streak.

If they lose out, they would have the third-worst record in the NBA and the third-most ping-pong balls in the Draft lottery

They haven't beaten a losing team since an overtime win over Minnesota on Feb. 26.

They were led by Markieff Morris with 18 points. Luis Scola had 17 points and 10 rebounds. Goran Dragic, who has been outstanding lately, didn't have it in this one. He shot 4-for-13 for 11 points with four turnovers.

The Suns hit a pair of 3-pointers in the closing seconds to make the score close.

QUOTABLE: "He's a young 20. He's going to have his moments. He''s going to face all-world bigs the next few games."

-- Williams, saying his young big man is still learning and hasn't necessarily turned a corner.

THE STAT: The Hornets' eight-game road losing streak is over.

TURNING POINT: The Hornets, down 34-23 with 8:00 left in the first half, outscored the Suns 16-9 until the break to cut the deficit to 43-39. Eric Gordon scored eight points during this stretch. They then outscored the Suns 22-10 to start the second half to take a 61-53 lead and never looked back. Davis hit four straight free throws off two steals (by Greivis Vasquez and Davis, the turnovers were by Dragic and Wes Johnson), to start the run.

QUOTABLE II: "I just consider the source ... Mike."

-- Suns coach Lindsey Hunter on Michael Beasley who had made curious comments after a loss to Golden State on Friday. Beasley suggested he had tuned out criticism in saying, "I stopped listening to people ... everybody. My friends, my family, my teammates, my coaches." Hunter, asked about this, said, "He'd better be listening to what we're doing defensively, or he won't play."

HOT: The Hornets shot 27-for-29 from the line, with Davis going 8-for-8.

NOT: Beasley, who had averaged 15.5 points on 58 percent shooting the previous four games, shot just 1-for-11 in this one.

IN THE ARENA: The Suns gave their annual Dan Majerle Hustle Award to P.J. Tucker. Suns management passed up a chance to make the Ring of Honor member their head coach when Alvin Gentry was replaced in mid-season. Majerle, who was an assistant to Gentry, ended up leaving the organization and recently signed on as the head coach at Grand Canyon University in Phoenix. Grand Canyon is making the transition to NCAA Division I. The Suns hired Hunter even though he had no coaching experience.

NOTABLE: The Suns are now virtually certain to end up with the second-worst record of their 45-season history. They went 16-66 in their expansion season of 1968-69. They would have to win their final five games to equal what now stands as their second-worst year: 28-54 in 1987-88.

UP NEXT: For the Hornets, Tuesday @ L.A. Lakers, Wednesday @ Sacramento, Friday @ L.A. Clippers. For the Suns, Tuesday @ Houston, Wednesday @ Dallas, Saturday @ Minnesota.