The Charlotte Hornets’ blowout victory over the Orlando Magic was fueled by the backcourt duo of Nicolas Batum and Kemba Walker.
The Charlotte Hornets grabbed an impressive victory over the Orlando Magic on a night in where the home team was without their leading scorer in Evan Fournier. Charlotte had a 28-2 spurt in the third quarter to put the game fully under control for a 120-101 win. In a game like this, there is usually more than one hero. However, due to his all-star level play of late, the player of the game nod goes to Nicolas Batum but we didn’t forget about Kemba Walker.
Nic nearly nabbed his second triple-double of the season but ultimately came up short because he rested the entire fourth quarter. He only has one triple-double so far this year but he flirts with them on almost a nightly basis. Batum finished the game with 20 points, nine rebounds, and eight assists in 29 minutes through three-quarters.
Like always, Kemba was at the forefront of the team’s offense. Walker led the team in scoring as he recorded his 21st game with 20+ points this season. He topped Nic by one point as Kemba finished the game with 21 points, three rebounds, and five assists. His all-star campaign continues to roll on.
MKG came to work ready to score in this one. He scored eight of his 12 total points in the first half. To pace his nice scoring night, he grabbed six rebounds, four assists, and two steals. The higher scoring output than usual resulted in a higher grade for Michael.
Even without making a big impact on the score sheet, Marvin was still able to have a positive impact. Williams hardly ever plays negatively and this game was no different as he did all of the little things to help his team get the win. Like MKG, he pulled down six boards. He also had an assist, a steal, and a block to go along with his eight points.
Cody didn’t have a huge night as he only scored 10 points and grabbed five rebounds but he had som great rim runs as his dunks off of rolls to the basket have become a nightly occurrence. Another reason why he gets such a high grade is because after dislocating his finger at the end of the second quarter, Zeller was tough enough to get it popped back in and return for the second half.
Ramon continues to provide solid minutes with the second unit as he gives Kemba Walker relief. Nothing fancy, just effective. Sessions finished with 13 points, three assists, and two steals. His up in scoring was due to his increased playing time.
Jeremy continued to be one of Coach Clifford’s most reliable scorers off of the bench in this one. When Lamb reaches the defensive potential of his seven-foot wing span, it is going to be hard to keep him off of the floor. He went 5-10 from the field and 1-2 behind the arc scoring 14 points off of the pine on the night.
Frank’s shooting woes continued in this one. While he managed to score nine points, he did so on 3-11 shooting from the field and 1-6 from three-point range. Kaminsky needs to find his range as he is only shooting an abysmal 29.4% from deep.
Roy played decent enough. He only scored four points and pulled down three boards but he also managed to block three shots. Hibbert continues to get limited minutes but blocks are becoming more and more consistent.
After a disappointing loss to the Brooklyn Nets, the Charlotte Hornets were able to bounce back against the Magic. The team will return home to host the Miami Heat in their next game as they look to make it two wins in a row. Divisional games are always tough but these are must win games if Steve Clifford’s side wants to get their first ever SouthEast title.