The Charlotte Hornets lost a hard-fought battle to the veteran San Antonio Spurs as Kemba Walker‘s near triple-double wasn’t enough to get the victory.
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The Charlotte Hornets (8-6) were defeated by the San Antonio Spurs (12-3) in an intense game that featured a number of lead changes. After starting the season on a high note, Charlotte has now lost three straight games. On the other hand, the Spurs extended their win streak to seven games and are now 8-0 on the road this season.
While the Hornets were once again without Cody Zeller (sore right shoulder) for the third straight game, Jeremy Lamb (hamstring) made his return after missing 10 games. In his first game back, Lamb scored two points in six minutes. The team is really struggling without Zeller in the lineup but they still managed to push San Antonio to the limit.
The competitive first half consisted of 19 lead changes as both teams came out firing. Even though both sides are known for their impressive defensive abilities, the offenses were on full display with good shots and ball movement. The fun didn’t stop at halftime. The two evenly matched teams kept the game within single digits the entire game. A few mental lapses on inbounds plays in the final minute of the game eventually led to the Hornets’ downfall in this one. The veteran experience of San Antonio was on full display as they showed Charlotte how to win in crunch time.
Kemba Walker led the Hornets with a near tiple-double of 26 points, nine rebounds, and seven assists on the night. Frank Kaminsky (eight rebounds, five assists) and Nicolas Batum (seven rebounds, five assists) had similar stat lines as they each chipped in 13 points. Marco Belinelli and Spencer Hawes each scored in double-digits off the bench with 12 and 11 points respectively.
Kawhi Leonard had one of the best games of his career as he scored 30 points on a career-high 14 made field goals. He also had five rebounds and four assists as Charlotte had no answer for his offensive ability. LaMarcus Aldridge scored 23 points and grabbed seven rebounds. Danny Green knocked down a number of clutch three-pointers as he scored 16 points in the game.
This news was shared with Twitter during the game.
This game featured 16 ties and 32 lead changes.
Charlotte out-rebounded San Antonio 44-34.
The Hornets committed 15 turnovers which are above their season average.
Charlotte’s second unit outscored the Spurs’ bench 45-30.
The Hornets shot (45-89) 50.6% from the field and (11-20) 55% from the three-point line.
With the loss, the Hornets fall to 0-1 on the season series against the Spurs. The two sides will meet once more this year in San Antonio on January 7th. If nothing, Charlotte proved that they could hang with one of the best team’s in the league with this game.
In their next match, the Charlotte Hornets will take on the New York Knicks in the Big Apple. It will be their first meeting against the Knickerbockers and it will be the first half of a back-to-back, home-and-home series between the two sides. Steve Clifford’s side will look to bounce back in that one and snap their three-game losing streak.