Hornets Beat Nets At The Hive

Posted: March 8, 2008 in Hornets

Chris Paul and the Hornets took care of business Friday night cleaning up the New Jersey Nets 107-96. The Hornets led this game by as much as 20, but the intensity dropped off a little toward the end of the game with a 7-0 Nets run to close the gap and, at one point, close to as much as 8 points behind. The Nets got off to a quick 8-0 start which quickly turned into a 20-13 Nets lead. The Hornets then called timeout to regroup. The Bees were able to stay in the game through halftime, but never led up to that point. The Hornets took the lead for the first time early in the 3rd and never trailed after that. They grew their lead to as much as 20 points and won by 11. This was the second straight game the Hornets were without their power forward David West. Looks like he’s questionable for tomorrows game against the Rockets too. Julian Wright had a big game for the second game in a row, racking up a career high 20 points with a couple ally-opp dunks thrown in. Chris Paul briefly went down after turning his ankle, but got right back up and continued playing. Attendance was 17,225. A sellout.

Field Goals Rebounds
pos min fgm-a 3pm-a ftm-a +/- off def tot ast pf st to bs ba pts
C.Paul G 41:55 7-14 0-3 11-11 +9 0 3 3 16 2 3 1 0 0 25
M.Peterson G 25:46 4-7 1-3 0-0 +5 0 2 2 0 1 0 1 0 0 9
R.Bowen F 24:37 4-7 0-0 1-2 -2 1 3 4 0 2 1 1 0 1 9
P.Stojakovic F 36:13 5-14 1-5 4-4 +12 1 4 5 1 1 1 3 1 1 15
T.Chandler C 37:16 6-9 0-0 7-8 +10 4 6 10 0 0 1 3 1 0 19
J.Wright   29:22 8-9 1-1 3-4 +6 1 7 8 1 2 2 0 0 0 20
J.Pargo   22:14 1-5 0-0 0-0 +6 1 2 3 3 0 0 1 0 0 2
M.Ely   16:32 3-6 0-0 2-4 +7 1 4 5 1 1 0 3 0 1 8
M.James   06:05 0-2 0-1 0-0 +2 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0

NEW ORLEANS, March 7 (AP) — Hornets rookie Julian Wright sat in front of his locker with a bag of ice wrapped around his right wrist, which was sore for all the right reasons.

“That’s from dunking,” Wright said, a reference to three alley-oop jams.

Wright had career highs of 20 points and eight rebounds in about 30 minutes as a reserve Friday night, helping the Hornets win their third straight game, 107-96 over the New Jersey Nets.

“I feel like I’ve learned a lot, the nuances and things that really make it much easier to make the transition in terms of being effective,” said Wright, who spent the first half of the season mostly watching from the bench. “It’s not just God-given ability.”

Chris Paul led the way with 25 points and 16 assists as the Hornets won for the fifth time in six games.

In keeping with a growing trend this season, several of Paul’s assists came on alley-oop lobs to Tyson Chandler, who finished with 19 points and 10 rebounds.

Wright, the 13th overall pick in last summer’s draft, has seen an uptick in playing time the past two games with starting forward David West (ankle) sitting out. He has responded with career highs in scoring in each game, starting with his 13 points in a victory over Atlanta last Wednesday night. Called Ju-Ju by teammates, he was 8-of-9 shooting against the Nets, mixing in mid-range jumpers, a 3-pointer and tip-ins with his authoritative, crowd-pleasing dunks.

“Ju-Ju brings a lot of energy to us,” Paul said. “He can really shoot the ball well now. … As he continues to play he’ll get more and more confident.”

Richard Jefferson scored 27 and Vince Carter had 19 points and 10 assists for New Jersey, which has lost four straight and five of six while trying to cling to the eighth and final playoff seed in the Eastern Conference. Devin Harris scored 17 for the Nets and Nenad Krstic 14.

Acknowledging he was frustrated, Jefferson showed little interest in going into great depth about New Jersey’s slide.

“Blah, blah, blah. Blah. Cliche 1, cliche 2, sports cliche No. 4 and sports cliche No. 7,” Jefferson said. “We didn’t do a very good job. We didn’t give 110 percent. We’ve got to give it all we got. We’ve got to leave it all on the court, and we didn’t do that.”

Peja Stojakovic scored 15 points for New Orleans and helped the Hornets, who trailed the entire first half, surge into the lead for good with a 16-2 run to open the third quarter.

He and Paul each converted three-point plays by hitting fades as they were fouled. Morris Peterson added a transition 3-pointer during the run.

The Nets briefly halted the surge when Harris made a driving layup and Jefferson a driving dunk, but the Hornets began to pull away again when Paul found Chandler on two straight alley-oop dunks, with Paul using a mesmerizing behind-the-back dribble on the second before throwing up the lob.

Early in the fourth, Wright made a steal and threw down his second alley-oop while running the break with Jannero Pargo. Wright then hit a jumper, soared in for another alley-oop from Paul, then hit a 3-pointer a few possessions later to make it 89-71.

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