by Peter Walsh / @goinginsquad
The backcourt duo of Greivis Vasquez and Eric Gordon proved to be too much for the Sixers to handle as the Hornets continue to play well with EG back in the lineup. Vasquez finished with 23 points and 9 assists while Gordon dropped 19 on 7-13 shooting. New Orleans shot 53 percent from the field, outrebounded Philly 48-32, outscored them 22-14 on the break and led by as much as 20 in an easy victory. The Hornets led 53-47 at halftime and poured it on in the third quarter with a 12-point scoring advantage to go up 18 heading into the fourth. The Sixers posed no serious threat in the fourth. Ryan Anderson chipped in with 14, Xavier Henry scored 11 and Anthony Davis finished with 10 points and 7 boards. Jrue Holiday was the lone brightspot for the underwhelming Sixers. He finished with 29 points and 11 dimes.
The Pacers absolutely crushed the Bobcats in Charlotte last night for a road win. The Bobcats never really stood a chance in this one as Indiana dominated them inside. The Pacers outrebounded Charlotte 60-31 and outscored them 52-22 in the paint. Charlotte trailed by ten at the half but after Paul George (16 points, 10 boards, 2 steals) triggered a 10-2 run third quarter run with back-to-back long three-balls, this one was a wrap. Roy Hibbert led the Pacers with 18 points and 7 boards, George Hill scored 16 and grabbed 7 boards and David West finished with 15 and 8. Gerald Henderson led Charlotte with 15. Kemba Walker left the game with what looked like an ankle injury in the second quarter. He did not return in the second half.
Behind 22 points and 9 boards from Brook Lopez, and 21 points apiece from Joe Johnson and Deron Williams, the Nets held off a tough Raptors team at home for their seventh straight win. After a closely contested first three quarters, the Nets pulled away early in the fourth with a 10-2 run headed by MarShon Brooks (7 points) and Andray Blatche (14 points). With just over eight minutes to play, D-Will found Blatche with a beautiful behind the back pass to put the Nets up 15. Kyle Lowry (21 points), who was playing on a bum ankle, scored 19 points in the fourth quarter and single handedly cut the deficit to single-digits to make things interesting. But BK quickly went on a 7-0 run to push the lead back to 15 and the game out of reach. Amir Johnson, Jose Calderon and DeMar DeRozan each chipped in with 15 points.
What a showing by Jamal Crawford. The Clippers sixth man simply took this game over in the fourth quarter, scoring 12 straight points while dismantling and demoralizing the Rockets defense. Crawford led the team in scoring with 30 points and LAC is now 11-1 on the season when he does so. Behind Crawford’s hot shooting in the fourth, the Clippers went up by 20 with under nine minutes to go. The Rockets cut the lead to 12 and looked to be threatening with about five minutes left but Crawford ended all hopes of a comeback with a back-breaking three-pointer that but LA back up by 15. Chris Paul sat for the second straight game with a sore knee and Eric Bledsoe once again filled in nicely with 19 points, 7 boards and 5 dimes. Matt Barnes chipped in with 18 off the bench and Blake Griffin finished with 19 points and 8 assists.
Great to have you back, Wilson Chandler, the game missed you. After Wes Matthews hit a three to force overtime, it was Chandler who played the hero in just his second game back from a hip injury that sidelined him for the first half of the season. With under twenty seconds to go and the game all knotted up at 111, Chandler got open in the corner and Dre Iguodala (9 points) found him for a three with 15 seconds to go that hit nothing but net. Dame Lillard’s (16 points, 8 boards, 5 assists) 3-point try on the other end hit iron and Ty Lawson (24 points, 12 assists) hit one of two free throws to ice the game. Chandler finished with 13 off the bench, Danilo Gallinari scored 25 and Kenneth Faried dropped 21 and grabbed 11 boards. LaMarcus Aldridge led all scorers with 28 points, Nicolas Batum scored 22, grabeed 7 boards and dished out 7 assists and J.J. Hickson finished with 19 points and 13 boards.
For what felt like the first time this entire season, the Lakers convincingly beat a team with a winning record. Dwight scored 31 on 14-18 shooting and grabbed 16 boards and Kobe also added 31 while checking Brandon Jennings defensively. The Black Mamba held Doo-Be-Doo to 12 points on 4-14 shooting and just 1 assist. It was the first time since they teamed up that both Kobe and Dwight each scored 30. The Lakers shot 50 percent from the field while Milwaukee shot just 35 percent from and 25 percent from three. Metta World Peace chipped in with 12 points and 6 boards. Monta Ellis led the Bucks with 17 points, 6 boards and 4 assists.