Notebook: Bobcats 105, Cavaliers 98



Posted Apr 17, 2013 11:57 PM

Derek Smith, for NBA.com

THE FACTS: In a matchup of young point guards, Kemba Walker scored a game-high 24 points as the Charlotte Bobcats held off the Cleveland Cavaliers 105-98 at Time Warner Cable Arena in the season finale for both teams. The Bobcats finish the season at 21-61 tripling their win total from a year ago. Kyrie Irving scored 24 points for the Cavaliers who finish the season 24-58

QUOTABLE: "Home is somewhere we want to play well. You have to protect your home court and we did that down the stretch. We figured out late that passing and moving the ball is a really good thing for us. When we move the ball like we did tonight, it's going to be hard for us to be defended."
-- Gerald Henderson

THE STAT: The Bobcats had 86 assists over the last three games on 117 made field goals. Walker had 23 of those assists which was almost two more assists per game than his season average. As a unit during the team's three-game win streak the Bobcats averaged 9.5 assists more than their season average of 19.2

TURNING POINT: The Bobcats used a 7-0 run to take away the Cleveland momentum early in the fourth quarter. The Cavs took their only lead at 77-76 on a Dion Waiters driving lay-up. That erased what had been a 24-point Bobcats advantage. Charlotte wouldn't let the lead slip away for long. Walker drained a three followed by a Bismack Biyombo dunk. The Bobcats closed out the defining 7-0 run with a Gerald Henderson put-back dunk for a six-point cushion.

HOT: The Bobcats were a team on fire in the first quarter tonight. Charlotte made 13 of its 18 shots for a 72.2 percent clip en route to a 34-point first quarter. Josh McRoberts led the way in the opening quarter going a perfect 3-of-3 from the floor and 2-of-2 from the charity stripe.

FANTASY SPOTLIGHT: Walker had a solid stat line for the Bobcats to close out the season. Walker had 24 points and seven assists both of which were team bests. He added four rebounds, two steals and a blocked shot. He finished the season as the team leader in scoring, assists and steals.

GOOD MOVE: The only good move for Cleveland in this game actually came from another game. The Memphis Grizzlies beat the Utah Jazz, which means the Los Angeles Lakers will make the playoffs and the Cavaliers will swap the Miami Heat's No. 1 pick with the Lakers' which could be a jump of 14 or 15 spots in this June's draft.

ROOKIE WATCH: Michael Kidd-Gilchrist finished his rookie campaign with 11 points, eight rebounds and four assists. Jeffery Taylor finished with six points and five rebounds. For Cleveland, Waiters closed his rookie year with 16 points while Tyler Zeller had six points and two rebounds and Kevin Jones had two points and three rebounds. Both Kidd-Gilchrist and Waiters should receive consideration for all-rookie honors when postseason awards are announced later this year.

NOTABLE: Walker has played in all 148 games in his first two seasons as a Bobcat. Charlotte is the first team in league history to triple its win total from the previous season. The Bobcats went 8-2 in their last 10 home game and averaged 100.4 points per game in that stretch. Josh McRoberts had a career-high-tying 20 points. Biyombo set the franchise record for most multi-block games with 44 eclipsing Emeka Okafor's record of 43 games in 2008-09. Irving had his fourth double-double of the season with 24 points and 10 assists. Alonzo Gee scored in double figures for the 45th time this season. Omri Casspi grabbed a season-high nine rebounds. The Cavaliers finish 24-58 and clinch the third worst record in the NBA which guarantees them no worse than the sixth pick. They are 64-166 in three years under coach Byron Scott. Cleveland ends the season losing 16 of 18 and its final six games.