Celtics End Hornets Streak
Charlotte’s 5-Game Run Ends with 134-106 Loss in Boston
By Matt Rochinski, hornets.com
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Kemba Walker paced Charlotte with 23 points and Dwight Howard added 21 but the Hornets saw their five-game winning streak come to an end at the hands of a red-hot shooting Celtics team in Boston, 134-106. The Celtics finished shooting 62.1 percent from the field, including 60.0 percent from long range as Charlotte opened its three-game road trip with a tough loss.
Charlotte shot an impressive 53.2 percent (25-of-47) from the field, including 38.5 percent (5-of-13) from long range in the first half in Boston and totaled 59 points behind a perfect 8-of-8 shooting from their captain Kemba Walker (21 points) - and still trailed by nine points at the break. How? Because the Celtics rarely missed themselves in the half, connecting on 63.0 percent (29-of-46) of their shots from the field, including 44.4 percent (4-of-9) from outside the arc, and had their All-Star point guard Kyrie Irving lead the way with 24 points. With their backs up against the wall, the Hornets knew they needed to find a way to slow down Boston in the second half. Instead the Celtics started even hotter, connecting on five of their first six shots in a 14-3 run that pushed the lead to 81-62. Facing a 19-point deficit and a Boston team that wouldn’t cool down, a comeback wasn’t in the cards for Charlotte as its five-game winning streak came to an end.
Hornets Player of the Game (Pick up your Kemba Walker gear here)
Kemba Walker couldn’t miss in the first half, draining all eight shots he took, including four three-pointers for 21 points. Much like the rest of Charlotte’s roster, Walker slowed down in the second half as the Celtics stayed hot. He ended his night with 23 points on 9-of-13 shooting, including 4-of-6 from long range, to go with five assists. This is Walker’s 39th game with 20+ points and his 46th game with multiple made three-point field goals this season.
Celtics Player of the Game
Kyrie Irving carried the Celtics again, totaling a game-high 34 points on 13-of-18 shooting from the field. He filled the stat sheet with five assists, four rebounds and a steal in 25 minutes.
Dwight Howard finished with 21 points on 10-of-15 shooting, marking his 23rd 20+ point performance of the season… Frank Kaminsky recorded his fourth-straight double-digit scoring performance with 16 points off the bench to go with three rebounds and two assists… Michael Carter-Williams was a perfect 5-of-5 from the field while tallying 14 points, three blocks, two rebounds, two assists and a steal in 19 minutes off the bench… With 10 points, Jeremy Lamb recorded his 35th appearance this season scoring 10+ points off the bench. Through his 2+ seasons in Charlotte, Lamb has recorded 91 games with at least 10 points as a reserve, the second most in franchise history… The Celtics outshot the Hornets 62.1 percent (54-of-87) to 46.2 percent (42-of-91) from the field, 60.0 percent (12-of-20) to 33.3 percent (9-of-27) from three-point range and 93.3 percent (14-of-15) to 59.1 percent (13-of-22) from the charity stripe… Michael Kidd-Gilchrist (left hamstring strain) and Cody Zeller (left knee soreness) both did not play.
Quote of the Night
“It’s one game. This is a tough 10-game stretch. We knew that when we started. We’re 4-1, but everything is about getting better and making progress. We’re going nowhere playing like that. We have to play the way we played the first four games, but it has to start with defense.” – Head Coach Steve Clifford