Hornets Bounced by Red-Hot Raptors
Charlotte Drops 4th-Straight Game Following Loss to East-Leading Toronto
By Sam Perley, hornets.com
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The first home appearance for the Hornets in nine days didn’t go as hoped as they fell to the visiting Toronto Raptors, 123-103, on Sunday, Feb. 11 in Charlotte. The hosts managed to get a team-high 23 points from Kemba Walker, but it wasn’t enough to overtake a deep Raptors team that had three different players crack the 20-point barrier.
Down just seven points at halftime, the Hornets watched the Raptors open the second half on a 18-2 run to take an 80-57 lead at the 5:26 mark of the third quarter. Toronto eventually entered the fourth with a 16-point advantage after outscoring Charlotte, 28-19, in the frame. The Hornets never posed a threat the rest of the way as the Raptors won their fifth-consecutive game.
Hornets Player of the Game (Pick up your Dwight Howard gear here)
Dwight Howard racked up 17 points on 7-of-11 shooting, a game-high 13 rebounds and three assists in the loss. Howard is now six double-digit rebounding performances away from passing Kevin Garnett for the fifth-highest total amongst any NBA player since the start of the 1983-84 season (767).
Raptors Player of the Game
C.J. Miles erupted for a season-high 24 points on 8-of-11 shooting (season-high-tying six three-point field goals) and a game-high-tying two steals in just 18 minutes off the bench in the victory. This is the fifth 20-point game of the season for Miles, two of which have now come in his last three outings.
Kemba Walker finished with a team-high 23 points (4-of-6 from three-point range), two rebounds and a game-high nine assists… Jeremy Lamb (13 points), Cody Zeller (10 points) and Frank Kaminsky (10 points) all scored in double figures off the bench for Charlotte… Michael Kidd-Gilchrist chipped in nine points and four boards, moving him past Dell Curry for seventh place on the franchise’s all-time rebounding leaderboard (2,024)… Nicolas Batum recorded the 2,500th assist of his NBA career… Toronto drained 18-of-37 three-point attempts (48.6 percent), while the Hornets went 10-of-23 from downtown (43.5 percent)… Both teams finished with 13 turnovers, although Toronto scored 22 points off takeaways while Charlotte had just 13… Toronto has won nine of the last 12 meetings with Charlotte, a stretch that began on April 8, 2015.
Quote of the Night
“Obviously, [Toronto’s] playing great and they played well today. Our effort was good. We lacked some details that you need to play against them defensively. Sometimes they say the schedule can catch up with you. It’s not the whole reason we lost today, but this last stretch has been a lot of traveling and you can see it.” – Hornets Head Coach Steve Clifford