Home Cooking What Hornets Needed against Hawks

Charlotte’s Strong Defensive Effort Propels Second-Straight Win

By Matt Rochinski, hornets.com

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Result

Nicolas Batum and Kemba Walker scored 16 points apiece to lead five Hornets scoring in double-digits, but it was again Charlotte’s defensive efforts that led to a 105-90 win over Atlanta on March 20 at Spectrum Center. The Hornets are now 20-3 overall when holding their opponents under 100 points, including a perfect 14-0 on their home court. Charlotte is now 9-3 against Southeast Division opponents and 6-1 at Spectrum Center.

Turning Point

The Hornets know that if they want to work their way back into the playoff picture, it will have to start with defense first. On Saturday against Washington, Charlotte held the Wizards to 61 points through the first three quarters and were fully aware they would need that type of defensive effort again with the Hawks in town. Trailing 17-11 with 2:11 remaining in the first quarter, the Hornets used one of their best defensive stretches of the season to turn a six-point deficit into a 13-point lead thanks to a 23-4 run. Marvin Williams scored seven points and Jeremy Lamb added five more over that stretch as the Hornets shot 72.7 percent (8-of-11) from the field and 80.0 percent (4-of-5) from long range, but it was how Charlotte buckled down defensively that changed the momentum of the contest. The Hornets held the Hawks to 22.2 percent (2-of-9) shooting from the field, including 0-of-2 from outside the arc while forcing three turnovers leading to five Hornets points, blocking two Atlanta shots, swiping two steals and outbounding the Hawks, 6-4, over the key 5:50 stretch as they took control and never trailed again on the way to the win.

Hornets Player of the Game

In his second game back after missing two games with migraines, Nicolas Batum had an extremely efficient night for the Hornets, finishing with a team-high-tying 16 points on 5-of-8 shooting from the field, including 1-of-2 from long distance and 5-of-7 from the charity stripe. Batum also dished out a game-high-tying six assists while bringing down one rebound and swiping one steal, and he turned the ball over just once in 32 minutes of action.

Hawks Player of the Game

Dennis Schroder filled the stat sheet for the Hawks, scoring a game-high 20 points while tying Batum with a game-high six dimes. He added three rebounds and two blocks in 31 minutes.

Game Notes

Charlotte has now won three-straight against the Hawks and have improved to 3-0 for the season series… Frank Kaminsky (14 points), Marvin Williams (13) and Jeremy Lamb (12) followed Kemba Walker and Nicolas Batum (16 apiece) in double-digit scoring… The Hornets only turned the ball over eight times tonight and now have totaled 19 games with fewer than 10 turnovers (fourth most in NBA entering tonight). Charlotte is now 15-5 at home when they have fewer turnovers than their opponent. The Hornets outscored Atlanta 17-6 in points off turnovers… With four threes, Kemba Walker now has 202 on the season, which marks only the third time a Charlotte player has tallied 200 threes in a season (Jason Richardson – 243, 2007-08 and Glen Rice – 207, 1996-97). Walker is the sixth quickest player to 200-or-more threes this season (Stephen Curry (GSW) – 262, James Harden (HOU) – 224, Klay Thompson (GSW) – 217, Eric Gordon (HOU) – 216 and Isaiah Thomas (BOS) – 207)… The Hornets bench outscored the Hawks bench 43-22… Dwight Howard has now recorded at least 10 rebounds in 12 consecutive games dating back to 2/25, his longest streak of the season. He had 10 rebounds and added 13 points for his 45th double-double of the season.

Quote of the Night

“You know, we didn’t have a good start, the first few minutes were really bad but after that we really stepped up our game. We did a great job on defense again tonight. That’s two games in a row. We’ve got to keep playing like that.” - Nicolas Batum

Quote of the Night


“You know, we didn’t have a good start, the first few minutes were really bad but after that we really stepped up our game. We did a great job on defense again tonight. That’s two games in a row. We’ve got to keep playing like that.” - Nicolas Batum

Next Up

The Hornets head to Orlando for a 7 p.m. tip on March 22 against the Magic at Amway Center. Watch the game on Fox Sports Southeast or listen on the Hornets App or WFNZ.


next up
Wednesday, Mar 22 - 7:00 pmAmway Center, Orlando, FL
Fox Sports Southeast - Charlotte Hornets App & WFNZ 610 AM