Hornets hand Lakers first loss of season
New Orleans, LA (Sports Network) – Baron Davis led all players with 23 points
and 12 assists, as the New Orleans Hornets defeated the Los Angeles Lakers,
114-95, at New Orleans Arena.
The Hornets took advantage of a tired Lakers squad, as six players reached
double figures to hand Los Angeles its first loss of the season. P.J. Brown
had 20 points, David Wesley 17, George Lynch 15, Jamaal Magloire 13 and
Darrell Armstrong 11.
New Orleans, which improved to 5-1 this season, shot a blazing 57 percent from
the floor in the contest. Additionally, the Hornets hit more than half of
their three-point attempts (12-23).
Coming off a double-overtime victory at San Antonio on Thursday, Los Angeles
looked sluggish from the start and never really got it going. Shaquille O’Neal
led the Lakers with 21 points, while Kobe Bryant finished with just 11 on 4-
of-14 shooting as Los Angeles lost for the first time in six games this
The Lakers’ legs appeared tired from the outset, as New Orleans outhustled and
outplayed the visitors. The Hornets scored 11 of the first 15 points in the
contest and continued to pad their cushion throughout the first period.
New Orleans led by as many as 11 points in the first quarter. Wesley scored
seven in the period and after 12 minutes of play, the Hornets held a 25-18
lead they would never relinquish.
The Hornets’ lead reached 14 points midway through the second quarter when
Davis hit a three-pointer, making it 52-38.
Los Angeles chipped away at the deficit and pulled within six at 56-50 on a
basket by O’Neal with just under two minutes to play in the first half.
New Orleans, though, got the lead back to nine with just seconds remaining
before Devean George hit a three-pointer to make it 61-55 at the intermission.
The Lakers appeared to be rejuvenated after the break, scoring nine of the
first 11 points of the third quarter to take the lead. A three by George gave
Los Angeles a 64-63 lead.
New Orleans, though, responded with an 18-7 spurt. Two three-pointers by Davis
started the burst and put the Hornets ahead for good. The lead continued to
grow and the Hornets led, 94-77, after 36 minutes of play.
The Laker starters spent the early parts of the fourth quarter stationed on
the bench, and when they finally came on the court, were never able to make a
run. New Orleans pulled away and turned the game into a laugher.
The Hornets had their first sellout of the season and improved to 3-0 on their
home court this season. Los Angeles lost for the first time in its last six
road contests against the Hornets.