Hornets Sting Spurs 95-88, Win 2nd In A Row
One team owns the third best record in the NBA. The other owns the third worst. But on Monday night in New Orleans, the Hornets (8-25) gave the San Antonio Spurs (27-10) a glimpse of the future may hold.
Playing behind an inspired defense, New Orleans rode Eric Gordon late to stun the Spurs, earning a 95-88 victory. Much like he did in Saturday night's victory over the Dallas Mavericks, Gordon struggled with his shot early, going 1-8. But Eric continues to prove the theory of "it's not how you start, it's how you finish." He finished 9-22 for 24 points, including 6 straight in the 4th that helped his team pull away.
Gordon wasn't the only impressive Hornet, the entire team was great on defense, withstanding several San Antonio runs.
New Orleans has struggled to get consistent play from the small forward position this season. Aminu possesses tremendous athleticism, but tends to be lackadaisical. As a result, Williams pulled him from the starting lineup in early December, and kept him out of several games entirely. Aminu returned to the starting lineup Saturday, has played with great energy, and the Hornets won both games. Monday night, he finished with only 4 points, but had 10 rebounds, 3 steals, 3 assists, and was active all over the floor.
Greivis Vasquez continues to make a case NBA's most improved player. Another double-double of 14 points and 11 assists has become expected rather than surprising. Ryan Anderson scored 13 off the bench, going 3-7 from beyond the arc.
Rookie Anthony Davis (pictured) was fantastic as well. In 26 minutes, he scored 17 points, grabbed 9 rebounds, had 3 steals and 1 block. He also remained aggressive without getting into foul trouble.
"We just played aggressive from the beginning," said Davis. "We really took pride in our defense tonight. In order to keep winning, we've got to continue playing defense like we did tonight."
In the last two games, Monty Williams has been able to use the starting lineup he was hoping to have for the majority of the season. With flashes of the future, Hornet fans are finally seeing what the franchise envisioned.
"We're gelling very well," explained Davis. "Eric is knocking down shots which is opening up the floor for everyone else."
Next up, the Houston Rockets visit the Hive tomorrow night. Tip-off is set for 7:00.