Rookie Damian Lillard hit a 3-pointer with 0.3 seconds left and the Portland Trail Blazers handed New Orleans its sixth straight loss with a 95-94 victory over the Hornets on Sunday night.
After trailing by as many as 16, Austin Rivers hit a 3-pointer for the Hornets to tie it at 92 with 50.9 seconds left. The Blazers then absorbed a blow when LaMarcus Aldridge suddenly came up limping and headed to the locker room with what appeared to be a left ankle injury, but Lillard came through to give Portland the win.
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.