Despite the efforts of new Hornets All-Star Kemba Walker, Charlotte couldn’t get the win.
On what was a wild day in the Association, the Charlotte Hornets found themselves in an uphill climb against a Trail Blazers team that had not dropped a home game yet in 2018. Falling behind early in the first, the Hornets surged back in the second quarter to make it a four point game at the half. Charlotte fell in to a deep hole again in the second half, and needed a 20-3 run in the fourth to tie the game at 95. With the teams tied at 97, the game went into overtime. There it was clear that all the energy used to make that late run had played a toll on the team as they were gassed in the extra period. Portland quickly gained control and it was a wrap.
Kemba Walker. The day began with talk that the captain was going to be moved to Cleveland in a blockbuster trade. Cleveland went other directions, meaning Kemba would remain a Hornet. Walker was later named an all-star as an injury replacement for Kristaps Porzingis. So how did Kemba respond to the events and non events of the day? He scored 40 points while shooting 6-11 from three and 8-8 from the free throw line. Marvin Williams returned to the lineup off an ankle injury and added 10. Frank Kaminisky added bench scoring going 4-8 from three. Charlotte’s perimeter defense held Portland to 29% from three.
Charlotte can not continue to get behind in games. It takes too much to crawl out of those holes, as seen by the fatigue that was apparent in the overtime period. Charlotte lost the battle of the boards 62-54. Charlotte got outscored in the paint 58-32.
February 9th @ Utah Jazz, 9 PM EST
Charlotte will not have much time to rest as the road trip continues with a stop in Salt Lake City for the second of a back to back.