Eric Gordon scored 24 points and dished out 7 assists in his season debut, leading the New Orleans Hornets to a 98-95 victory against the Bobcats in Charlotte.
Gordon, who has been sidelined with a knee injury since last season, came off the bench in his first game back and played for almost 25 minutes. His influence was palpable in the final quarter, and he created isolation scoring for himself and opportunities for his teammates.
The Hornets fell to the Toronto Raptors in overtime at the New Orleans Arena on Friday night, 104-97, despite an inspiring fourth quarter rally.
The Raptors set the tempo in the extra period, holding the Hornets to 18% shooting. Toronto’s DeMar DeRozan, with 31.7 seconds to play, iced the game with a 21-foot jumper, sending the crowd to the exits.
The Minnesota Timberwolves beat the New Orleans Hornets under the rim tonight, 113-102, their dominance in the paint overshadowing the Hornets’ 53 percent shooting and a career performance by guard Austin Rivers.
Nikola Pekovic led Minnesota with a career high 31 points, all but one of his shots from in the key. Pekovic bullied the Hornets defense into allowing him to shoot 14-18 from the field, and the rest of the Timberwolves followed suit, with 70 of their points scored from down-low. Minnesota also scored 24 second-chance points as they out-rebounded the Hornets 40-30.
The New Orleans Hornets put up a great defensive effort against the Oklahoma City Thunder on the road yesterday evening, but were unable to keep pace in the final minutes, losing 92-88.
The New Orleans defense kept the Thunder to season-low scoring at the end of the first quarter (17 points) and before halftime (36 points). Their strategy: to keep the NBA’s top scoring team to a low output that they could attempt to match.
Despite the Hornets’ best efforts the Memphis veterans out-played the young New Orleans team Friday night, 96-89. Memphis starters Rudy Gay, Zach Randolph and Mark Gasol combined for 56 points and 24 rebounds.
The Grizzlies’ defense grinded the Hornets, capturing 35 defensive rebounds, with Randolph and Gasol together contributing 17 boards. The Grizzlies snagged nine steals, five alone from Mike Conley, blocked the Bees six times, and scored 19 points off of Hornets turnovers.
The Memphis Grizzlies (13-3) meet the Hornets (5-12) tonight at the New Orleans Arena at 7 p.m. The Grizzlies are currently first place in the Western Conference, despite having one of the most difficult schedules in the league so far. The Heat, Thunder, and Knicks have all fallen to Memphis.