Sunday, December 28, 2014

Hornets Extra: Magic 102, Hornets 94



To sum up last night's performance by the Charlotte Hornets in their home game against the Orlando Magic, it would be a tale of a team that has decided to quit on themselves for most of the night, while the other would be a tale of a player going beastmode.  It was that kind of night, as the Orlando Magic handed the Hornets their second straight loss witha 102-94 win over Charlotte.

Despite the loss, it would be a career/record setting night for Kemba Walker, as he would lead all game scorers with 42 points, including a record-setting 35 point performance in the second half, setting a Charlotte NBA record for most points in a half surpassing the 28 point point scoring totals in a half that were set by former Hornets Kelly Tripucka(28 vs. IND on 12/14/1988) and twice by Glen Rice(First vs. PHX on 2/19/1997 and again vs. MIA 1/2/1998).

Head Coach Steve Clifford wasn't pleased with his team's effort in the loss, which dropped Charlotte to 10-21, but he did praise Kemba for keeping his team in the game.  "He can be a cornerstone player for teams that go deep into the playoffs because of his competitiveness. He has just a competitive spirit that is contagious to me." Clifford said.

"I had a career night, a great game but it just wasn't enough. Our problem wasn't offensively, it was defensively." Walker said.  The defensive game doomed Charlotte big time, turning the ball over 10 times, and allowing Orlando to take advantage and opening the door for Nikola Vucevic to lead the way for the Magic with 22 points to go with 11 rebounds in last night's win.

Orlando also saw Tobias Harris join in with 21 points, while Victor Oladipo helped out the cause with 13 on the night for the Magic, who shot 45.8% from the field, despite being out-rebounded by the Hornets by a plus-1 margin(41-40).  Walker did indeed led all game scorers with a season-high 42 point outburst, while Al Jefferson had 14 points for Charlotte in the loss.

Charlotte hopes to bounce back from two tough losses and to get back into the win column on Monday night at Time Warner Cable Arena, as they take on the Milwaukee Bucks at 7:10 p.m., before hitting the road to wrap up 2014 in Houston against the Rockets on Wednesday.

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