Hornets wrapup: Charlotte assaulted by Toronto 3-pointers again in game where both teams surpassed 100 points
By Richard Walker
Notes and observations from Saturday’s 116-113 Charlotte Hornets’ loss to the Toronto Raptors in Tampa, Fla., that dropped Charlotte to 6-8 overall:
… After watching the Raptors hit 20 3-pointers on 50 attempts in Thursday’s 111-108 loss, the Hornets yielded 21 of 49 3-point shooting by Toronto in Saturday’s loss. “It challenges our defense,” Hornets coach James Borrego said of the Raptors’ 3-point shooting.
… Terry Rozier misfired on a potential tying 3-pointer with 0.4 seconds left and motioned to game officials that he felt he was fouled. Borrego backed up Rozier’s claim afterwards. “Terry got the look we wanted,” Borrego said. “I thought he got fouled there at the end but I’ll review it.”
… Gordon Hayward showed no rustiness from missing Thursday’s game with a hip strain. He hit his first five field goal attempts before finishing seven of 13 overall and hit all 10 of his free throws to score a game-high 25 points along with five rebounds and three assists.
… Devonte’ Graham appears to be shaking off his early-season shooting slump. He was seven of 15 overall and four of nine on 3-pointers in a 20-point performance on Saturday. “I thought he looked great,” Borrego said.
… The Hornets are off for three full days before playing again on Wednesday. It’s the longest break of the season for the team. “We’ll take tomorrow off, we’ll practice Monday and Tuesday and we’ll be in better shape on Wednesday,” Borrego said.
… Rozier added 24 points and nine rebounds, P.J. Washington 14 points and 12 rebounds and rookie LaMelo Ball 11 points, five rebounds and four assists. “We definitely need some rest and we’ll be ready to come back Wednesday and get a win,” Washington said.
… Toronto’s two top scorers on Saturday came off the bench as guard Norman Powell had 24 points and center Chris Boucher had 20 points, including two key free throws with 3.4 seconds left.
… Charlotte has now trailed after all four quarters in all eight of their losses this season. The Hornets also trailed after the first three quarters of their 118-110 come-from-behind win at New Orleans on Jan. 8.
… Charlotte has converted 184 3-pointers in 14 games – an average of 13.1 per game. But the Hornets have allowed 195 3-pointers.
What’s next: Charlotte hosts Washington on Wednesday at 7 p.m.
It’s the first meeting of the season against the Wizards and only the third game this season against a Southeast Division team; Charlotte previously has won both meetings against Atlanta and has still yet to play Miami and Orlando.