Henderson, Walker lead Bobcats over Magic
CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Gerald Henderson and Kemba Walker each scored 34 points, and the Charlotte Bobcats handed the injury-riddled Orlando Magic their eighth straight loss, 114-108 Wednesday night in a matchup of the NBA’s worst teams.
The Bobcats erased a 19-point, first-quarter deficit behind the shooting of Henderson, who finished 12 of 18 from the field and 9 of 10 from the foul line.
Walker did a little bit of everything, dishing out nine assists and grabbing seven rebounds as the Bobcats won for the fourth time in five games at home.
Tobias Harris had a career-high 29 points and nine rebounds, and rookie Kyle O’Quinn had a career-high 23 points and 11 rebounds for the Magic.
The Magic came in having lost 29 of their last 33 games, while the Bobcats had dropped 22 of their previous 27.
Orlando closed the first quarter with a 23-4 run to take a 39-20 lead.
Harris had 12 points in the opening period and O’Quinn, who played at Norfolk State last year, added 10. Orlando shot 70 percent in the first quarter.
But the Magic lead quickly disappeared.
Charlotte began chipping away and took the lead at 73-71 lead with 5:52 left in the third quarter on a 17-footer from Walker.
Charlotte had an 83-82 lead heading into the fourth quarter, with Walker and Henderson combining for 50 points, nine rebounds and eight assists at that point.
The Magic started the fourth quarter with a 12-6 run, but the Bobcats closed strong.
Charlotte took the lead for good with 2:30 left in the game on an alley-oop dunk by Bismack Biyombo off a feed from Ben Gordon.
Henderson added a 19-footer to push the lead to four and the Bobcats put the game away for good on another alley-oop dunk from Gordon to Josh McRoberts with 17 seconds remaining.
The Bobcats are 17-54, a half-game behind the Magic, who dropped to 18-54, for the worst record in the league.
Biyombo added 11 points and seven rebounds for the Bobcats.
Maurice Harkless finished with 18 points on 7-of-12 shooting and Jameer Nelson had 13 points and 11 assists in the loss.
It was the first game back on the Orlando bench for forward Hedo Turkoglu, who finished serving a 20-game suspension by the NBA for testing positive for methenolone, an anabolic steroid.
He didn’t play.
NOTES: The Magic were without Arron Afflalo, Glen Davis, Andrew Nicholson, Al Harrington and Nikola Vucevic due to injuries. Coach Jacque Vaughn only played eight players and four of Orlando’s starters played at least 42 minutes. … Charlotte’s bench outscored Orlando’s reserves 23-12. … The Bobcats held a 43-34 edge in rebounding.