Hornets.com postgame: Magic 123, Hornets 117

Monday, February 8, 2010
By: Jim Eichenhofer, Hornets.com

Peja Stojakovic and Darren Collison both may have played their best games of the season. The Hornets almost certainly played their best half of 2009-10, in racking up 70 points prior to intermission against the defending Eastern Conference champions.

Vince Carter made sure it still wasn’t enough. One of four Magic players who have been selected to the All-Star Game at least once, the 33-year-old turned back the clock to his vintage days in the league with Toronto and New Jersey, racking up 48 points. It was his most prolific offensive game since 2006. Carter's career-high is 51.

In one of the most well-played games of the season involving the Hornets, Stojakovic tallied a season-best 29 points, including 5-for-8 three-point shooting. Despite the presence of a total of six players who have received All-Star nods in the past, there were times when Collison was the best player on the floor, especially in the first half. The rookie from UCLA finished with a career-high of 27 points, along with nine assists. While he didn’t notch a career- or season-high, David West was also excellent on the offensive end, countering several Magic rallies with key buckets. The two-time All-Star had 27 points on 10-for-19 shooting.

According to Hornets radio, it was the first time in New Orleans franchise history that three players scored 27 points or more in the same game. Keep in mind, the Hornets did not have starting guards Chris Paul and Marcus Thornton, the latter for a third straight game due to injury.

Ultimately though, Carter enabled Orlando to overcome a 70-55 halftime deficit by draining a barrage of deep jumpers. He piled up 34 points in the second half. Impressively, his 48-point eruption featured only four foul shots. He was 19-for-27 from the field, including 6-for-10 on three-pointers.