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NBA -- Hornets beat Nuggets for third straight W


PhilBoxing.com




CHARLOTTE - Charlotte Hornets extended their longest winning streak of the season at three games, routing the visiting Denver Nuggets, 100-92, on Monday night at the time Warner Cable Arena.

The Hornets, who never trailed and built a lead that ballooned to as many as 30 points, were Led by the dynamic duo of center Al Jefferson and point guard Kemba Walker.

In a match-up with Nuggets point guard Ty Lawson, Walker showed the versatility of his inside-out game to finish with 18 points and nine assists against only one turnover in 30 minutes of play.

But it was Al Jefferson, dubbed Big Al, who led the the scoring parade for Charlotte with 22 points and 7 boards despite being listed as probable prior to start of the game due to a mild groin strain injury he suffered Saturday's win over the Utah Jazz.

The Nuggets who were trying to win their third game as well were led by Lawson with 18 points, but he only scored 5 points in the second half and none in the final quarter. He also had four turnovers against four assists and was the only double digit scorer in the Denver starting line up.

Lawson didn't get much scoring help from the rest of the starting five as Arron Afflalo was held to just 9 points and Wilson Chandler was limited to only six points by the stingy Hornets defense.

Bench production was big for the Hornets as their bench outscored their Nuggets counterparts 51 to 39, with Garry Neal contributing 13 points and PJ Hairston chipping in 10 points and 10 rebounds in one of his better games coming off the bench. The Nuggets bench was led by Alonzo Gee with 15 points, the only other twin-digit scorer for Denver.

The Hornets started the game hot with Walker sinking a trey and Big Al making his first 3 shots and raced to a 11-2 led in the first quarter before the Nuggets made a game of it by cutting the lead to 2 thru the early heroics of Lawson. But the first quarter ended with Charlotte on top 28 -10 and would never relinquish the lead the rest of the game. The loss dropped the Nuggets to 12-16 record while the Hornets improved to 9-19 for the season.

Side Notes:

Hornets guard Lance Stephenson, the subject of trade rumors, missed his 3rd straight game as he is sidelined with a sprained pelvis.

Nuggets center Timofey Mozgov had four stitches near his left eye due to a laceration as result of a foul from Hornets guard Gerald Henderson in the first quarter. Mozgov later returned to the game and finished with two points.

Photo: Kemba Walker (L) got the better of Ty Lawson in their point guard duel as the Hornets beat the Nuggets 100-92.


Click here to view a list of other articles written by Ananias Diaz.


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