BUZZ WEEKLY: HORNETS LET ONE SLIP AWAY IN L.A.

HORNETS LET ONE SLIP AWAY IN L.A.

Written by David W. Walters

Big aL LAkers

Photo credit (NBAE/Getty Images)

 

The Charlotte Hornets (3-4) dropped the first game of their west coast swing on Sunday night when the Los Angeles Lakers (1-5) caught fire in the second half and pulled away for a 107-92 victory.

 

The Hornets jumped all over the Lakers early, leading by as much as nine in the first quarter.  Al Jefferson went to work on the Lakers weak interior defense while seemingly every Lakers shot that went up drew nothing but iron and Charlotte ended the first period with a 25-18 lead.

 

The game became more competitive in the second quarter; the Lakers closed the gap but the Hornets benefitted from the Lakers sending help on Jefferson and used the drive and kick game to free up Marvin Williams in the corner for a few buckets.  Kemba Walker also contributed some scrappy buckets as the Hornets went into the locker room with a 51-42 lead behind 11 points a piece from Big Al, Walker and Williams.

 

The Lakers battled back in the third quarter and Carlos Boozer took over on four straight possessions to give Los Angeles their first lead of the night; and Jeremy Lin and Kobe Bryant both knocked down threes to cap off a 16-0 run.  The Hornets were outscored 34-13 in the third quarter and carried a 64-76 deficit into the final period.

 

The Hornets tried to battle back in the fourth quarter, but the Lakers couldn’t miss and Charlotte couldn’t keep up as the Lakers played easily their best game of the season to get their first win of the season.

 

Everything clicked on offense for the Lakers and they finished with a 28-15 advantage in assists.  The Hornets shot 44% from the field and the Lakers shot 51% for the game, but the big difference came in the second half, when the Lakers shot 64% and hit six three-pointers.

 

Jefferson led the way for Charlotte with 23 points and four rebounds and Walker finished with 17 points, three rebounds and four assists.  Williams couldn’t carry his hot hand into the second half and he finished with 11 points and five rebounds and Lance Stephenson finished with six points, 10 rebounds and five assists.

Kemba Walker.jpg Lakers

Photo credit (NBAE/Getty Images)

 

Gary Neal was the only meaningful contributor off the bench for the Hornets, scoring 14 points.  Gerald Henderson did play, but only three minutes of garbage time; he finished with two points.

 

Kobe Bryant led the Lakers with 21 points, six rebounds and four assists and Jeremy Lin also chipped in 21 points and seven assists.  Boozer finished with 16 points and five rebounds and Ed Davis led the Lakers reserves with 10 points and five rebounds.

 

The Hornets play the second game of their west coast trip on Tuesday when they travel to Portland to face off against Damian Lillard and the Trail Blazers.

you can follow David W. Walters @Original_DWade.

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