Bismack Biyombo would not be denied. With the Bobcats (6-34) leading 73-71 and time ticking away on March 12 in New Orleans (10-32), Trevor Ariza appeared to have a clear path to the basket for a one-handed jam down the right baseline to send the game into overtime. But that was before Biyombo came out of nowhere and got two hands up to block Ariza’s attempt, leading the Bobcats to victory on his fourth block of the game.
The Bobcats and Hornets both struggled offensive in the first half as the Hornets headed to intermission with a 37-35 lead. They extended the lead early in the third after a Chris Kaman hit a jumpshot to push the lead to 46-39 with 7:37 left in the third quarter… However, the two rookies, Biyombo and Kemba Walker each contributed six third quarter points for the Bobcats as they finished the third on a 22-9 run to take a 61-55 lead into the final frame. After pushing the lead to 11, a late fury by the Hornets cut the lead to 73-71 before Biyombo made the play when Charlotte needed him the most.
INSIDE THE BOX SCORE
Charlotte did shoot the ball well from the field, as they hit 34 of 79 shots (43 percent). New Orleans was only able to connect on 30 of 78 (39 percent)... Rarely does a team not hit a single 3-pointer in a game. It is even less likely for you to win a game without hitting a three. That is what the Bobcats did though as they missed all 12 of their attempts from deep… The Hornets on the other hand, hit 5 of 12, which helped them stay in the game… The Bobcats did a great job rebounding against the sixth best rebounding team in the league as they outrebounded the Hornets, 47-37… Charlotte did not get to the line like they have been in recent games, as they only hit 5 of 7 from the free throw line… The Bobcats continued their great defense in the paint as they blocked seven shots, one of above their season average.
BOBCATS PLAYERS OF THE GAME
Bismack Biyombo was all over the court, making plays on both ends. Biyombo finished the game with 12 points, seven rebounds and four blocks.
BOBCATS TOP RESERVE
The other rookie on the team, Kemba Walker, also made huge plays down the stretch when the Bobcats pulled away from the Hornets. Kemba finished with 14 points, four rebounds and three assists.
HORNETS PLAYER OF THE GAME
Chris Kaman had a big game for the Hornets with 16 rebounds to go along with 12 points.
INSIDE THE LOCKER ROOM
"I really am (proud). I could just see ourselves fading at the end of the game, but we hung in there. For the last play of the game, Bismack (Biyombo) came in and blocked the shot and gave us the win. That was awesome. For a kid 19 years old and really has not played the game this much, he retained exactly what we talked about and came up with the big block"
- Bobcats Head Coach Paul Silas
"First, I thought we were going into overtime. Second, I thought I’ve got to go for the block. Because coach said don’t switch, because once you switch, you know they expect that and they have a big man under the bucket who can get the ball. So we had to be smart. I had to make a decision and once I saw him jumping in the air, I thought I can block that shot. I thought just jump smart and don’t foul. Thank God, we got the victory."
- Bobcats Center Bismack Biyombo
Gerald Henderson had a team-high 15 points on 6-of-11 shooting… Corey Maggette did not play in the second half due to back spasms… After being inactive for the past three games, Boris Diaw played 11 minutes and scored two points… DJ White made a strong contribution on the glass as he had six rebounds to go along with four points.
The Bobcats will look to build a winning streak as they take on the Houston Rockets at 8 p.m. on March 14 at the Toyota Center. Catch all the action on SportSouth and listen to us on WFNZ. Also, don’t forget to join the chat at bobcats.com