NBA -- Brook Lopez carries Nets past Hornets, 91-88
By Eric Biasbas
Thu, 26 Mar 2015
CHARLOTTE -- Brook Lopez netted 34 points and grabbed 10 rebounds on Wednesday night as the visiting Brooklyn Nets defeated the struggling Charlotte Hornets, 91-88, at the Time Warner Cable Arena.
Lopez consistently hit mid-range jumpers all night as the Hornets struggled to defend the pick-and-roll.
"We're just playing together as a team, moving the ball well and we have good spacing." Lopez told reporters.
After a fairly even first half, the Hornets took a 46-42 lead. But the third quarter proved to be disastrous for the Hornets, who lost their focus and started complaining to the officials. As a result, they were outscored, 26-18, giving the Nets a 68-64 advantage.
Hornets' head coach Steve Clifford criticized his team's lack of concentration. "It's got to be about winning. It can't be about the officials and not getting calls. It's got to be locked in on execution."
Al Jefferson who finished with 23 points and 10 rebounds despite playing with a hurt right knee agreed, " We need to stay focused for 48 minutes."
The Hornets slowly clawed their way back in the fourth period and tied the count several times. It was tit for tat in the final 3 minutes, with Lopez hitting some crucial baskets. With the score sitting at 91-86 in favor of the Nets and 9 seconds left, Kemba Walker converted a driving lay up.
The Nets then made an errant inbound pass that gave the Hornets one final possession with 3 seconds to go. However, the inbound pass was deflected by Lopez and the time expired without the Hornets making a shot.
Deron Williams had 10 points and 14 assists for the Nets while Gerald Henderson had 23 for the Hornets.
Both teams now have an identical record (30-40) with the Nets holding the tiebreaker. They are half game behind both Boston and Indiana (31-40) for the eight playoff spot.
The Hornets will be on the road to face the Washington Wizards this Friday while the Nets host the Cleveland Cavaliers also on Friday.
Click here to view a list of other articles written by Eric Biasbas.
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