Charlotte Hornets wrapup: Thursday’s home game vs. Los Angeles Clippers

By Richard Walker

Notes and observations from Thursday’s 113-90 Hornets’ home loss to the Los Angeles Clippers that dropped Charlotte to 33-37 overall:

… The Hornets have lost three straight games yet remain in eighth place in the Eastern Conference. Charlotte is tied with the Indiana Pacers but hold the series tie-breaker with a 2-1 win this season. Charlotte closes its regular season with road games at New York and Washington on Saturday and Sunday while Indiana finishes with a home game against the Los Angeles Lakers on Saturday and a game at Toronto (in Tampa) on Sunday. “Going into Saturday and Sunday’s games, we’ll be in good shape,” Hornets center Bismack Biyombo said. “We’ll watch film and continue to get better.”

… Charlotte is awaiting tests on Miles Bridges and coach James Borrego is hopeful he’ll be able to return from “health and safety protocols” after missing his sixth straight game on Thursday night. “Hopefully, we’ll get some good news on Miles,” Borrego said after the game.

… Former Charlotte Hornets standout Nic Batum was booed when he entered the game late in the first quarter, then had 11 points, three rebounds and a blocked shot in 23 minutes for the Clippers (47-23).

… Leading the balanced Clippers offense were Paul George (20 points, 10 rebounds, six assists), Reggie Jackson (19 points), Kawhi Leonard (16 points) and Marcus Morris (15 points). George and Jackson had five 3-pointers apiece as L.A. hit 21 of 45 3-pointers overall as compared to nine of 33 3-pointers for Charlotte. “It’s tough to make up a difference of 12 3s,” Borrego said.

… LaMelo Ball led Charlotte with 18 points, six rebounds and seven assists. Bismack Biyombo added 13 points and seven rebounds, Terry Rozier 10 points, four rebounds and five assists, Jalen McDaniels 10 points, four rebounds and two assists and Cody Zeller 10 points and six rebounds.

… Among the 4,442 in attendance at the Spectrum Center was former two-time Charlotte head coach Larry Brown. Brown, a former North Carolina standout guard, coached the last two Carolina Cougars teams of the old ABA from 1972 to 1974 and then returned to coach the Charlotte Bobcats from 2008 to 2011. In 2010, Brown led the Bobcats’ to the expansion franchise’s first postseason appearance.

… Charlotte finished 18-18 at home this season for its best home record since going 25-16 in the 2018-19 season. The Hornets also finished 13-17 against the Western Conference for their best record against that conference since going 14-16 in the 2017-18 season.

… The Clippers swept the Hornets and haven’t lost to Charlotte since the 2017-18 season. Other teams to sweep Charlotte this season have been Chicago, Denver, Memphis, Utah and the Los Angeles Lakers.

What’s next: The Hornets visit the New York Knicks on Saturday at 1 p.m.