Hornets Unable to Halt 76ers Streak

By Matt Rochinski, hornets.com

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Michael Kidd-Gilchrist and Malik Monk scored 16 points apiece and Willy Hernangomez (15 points, 11 rebounds) and Dwight Howard (10 points, 10 rebounds) each recorded double-doubles but it wasn’t enough to stop Philadelphia in a 119-102 loss to the 76ers on Easter Sunday at Spectrum Center. Philadelphia extended its winning streak to 10 games with the victory.

Turning Point
Trailing 70-62 with 8:30 remaining in the third quarter, the Hornets were looking for some kind of spark and got it when Michael Kidd-Gilchrist blew by Ben Simmons on the left side and threw down a dunk that sparked a 9-2 Charlotte run and cut the lead to 72-71. Unfortunately for the Hornets, they just could not get over the hump and take the lead back from Philadelphia as the Sixers responded with a 14-0 run of their own to break the game open. In that 3:52 stretch, Charlotte missed all five of its field goal attempts and both of its free throw attempts while also turning the ball over three times. In the same stretch, Philadelphia would go on to connect on 7-of-9 field goal attempts to give the Sixers the double-digit advantage and set the Hornets up to play catch up the rest of the way.

Hornets Player of the Game (Pick up your Michael Kidd-Gilchrist gear here)
Michael Kidd-Gilchrist led the Hornets with 16 points on 6-of-13 shooting from the field and 4-of-5 from the free-throw line. Kidd-Gilchrist has now recorded 10+ points in the three-straight games (3/28 – 4/1). MKG also grabbed five rebounds and swiped two steals in 33 minutes.

76ers Player of the Game
Marco Belinelli came off the bench to lead all scorers with 22 points on 9-of-10 shooting from the field, including 3-of-4 from long range, and 1-of-1 from the charity stripe. He also added three assists and a rebound in 31 minutes of action.

Game Notes
Malik Monk had 16 points on 6-of-9 shooting from the field, including 4-of-9 from beyond the arc. This is the rookie’s 11th game this season with at least three made three-point field goals, tying Raymond Felton for the second highest total of such games by a rookie in Charlotte history (D.J. Augustin: 14, 2008-09)… Willy Hernangomez had 15 points on 2-of-3 shooting from the field and 11-of-14 shooting from the free-throw line. His 11 made free throws and 14 attempts were both good for new career highs (prev: 7-8 at DEN, 12/17/16). He also recorded his third double-double of the season and second with the Hornets… Dwight Howard finished with 10 points and 10 rebounds, good for his 49th double-double of the season, tying Larry Johnson for the most in a single season in franchise history. This is Howard’s 715th career double-double, enough to pass John Stockton and move alone into sixth place on the NBA’s leaderboard since 1963-64… Jeremy Lamb had 12 points on 5-of-13 shooting, including 2-of-4 from three-point range. Lamb has made a career-high 90 three-pointers this season (prev: 88, 13-14 with OKC)… Frank Kaminsky had 10 points on 3-of-8 shooting, including 1-of-5 from deep. Kaminsky has 281 career threes in Charlotte, passing Baron Davis and moving into 10th place on the Hornets all-time three-point leaderboard… Kemba Walker finished with 10 points, four assists and a blocked shot. He made five free throws on five attempts, extending his franchise-best made free throw streak to 53 straight dating back to 3/10 at Phoenix.

Quote of the Night
“The two guys that I thought played really well frankly were MKG [Michael Kidd-Gilchrist] did a really good job on Simmons. If you watch him [Simmons] night in and night out there are very few people who can guard him one-one-one. He did it the whole game. Then I thought Julyan Stone, for a guy who hasn’t played really. It’s stuff you guys wouldn’t see, but in terms of allowing people to execute his defense on both Belinelli and [JJ] Redick was outstanding. Those were the two guys for me without watching the film played well.” – Head Coach Steve Clifford

Next Up
Charlotte opens a brief two-game road trip with an 8 p.m. tip on Tuesday in Chicago. The game can be seen on FOX Sports Southeast or heard on WFNZ or on the official Charlotte Hornets mobile app.