The Charlotte Bobcats have endured multiple injuries in the past week and won their last two games while scoring 100 points or more. Monday’s win game in unusual fashion, as Charlotte (10-11) outdueled the Golden State Warriors (12-10) in a 115-111 shootout.
Kemba Walker had his best game of the season, scoring 27 of his 31 points in the second half, including the Bobcats last 15 points. Walker is averaging 20.4 points and shooting 46 percent in his last five games. Walker and Henderson’s offensive surge is timely given the Bobcats injuries.
Stephen Curry scored a season-high 43 points in his Charlotte homecoming and Klay Thompson chipped in 22, but the Warriors starting backcourt only combined to make nine of their 28 3-point attempts. Charlotte entered the game 24th in 3-point defense.
It’s encouraging to see the Bobcats hang with a high scoring offense and have their best player show up down the stretch. Charlotte never trailed, but despite allowing more 34 points in the fourth quarter, didn’t cough up the lead as they did in Miami and Dallas last week. As uncommon as these high-scoring games will be this season, these are the type of games the Bobcats would have lost in the past two seasons.
IN THE BONUS:
- Monday’s win was the Bobcats first against a team with a record of .500 or better.
- Anthony Tolliver started in place of Jeff Taylor (heel contusion). The Bobcats were a team-high +14 with Tolliver on the court for 34 minutes. Funny how that works out.
- Ben Gordon scored 12 points in 13 minutes off the bench. Gordon is seeing more time in the rotation with the injuries to Michael Kidd-Gilchrist and Taylor, and gave the Bobcats a much needed scoring punch for the second unit. Ramon Sessions added 13 points off the bench, which was more than the entire Warriors bench.
- Al Jefferson was held to just 11 points on 5 of 16 shooting.
- This was the first game of the season where Walker, Henderson, Gordon and Sessions each scored in double digits. Each player averaged double figures in scoring last season when the Bobcats led the league in backcourt points.
- Former North Carolina forward Harrison Barnes had 14 points, nine rebounds, three assists and two steals. Barnes is starting in place of Andre Iguodala (hamstring).
- Josh McRoberts finished with 11 points, 10 rebounds and six assists.
ABOVE THE RIM:
- Rick Bonnell, Charlotte Observer: The Bobcats are winning because they’re guarding, and that was true even on the night they allowed the most points this season. Understand the context—they were without three of their top defenders.
- Andy Liu, Golden State of Mind: The game itself wasn’t as entertaining as the score suggests, with the Bobcats scoring 115 points with 62 coming after halftime. It only seems embarrassing, though, but considering the way the Warriors come to play against any and all basketball teams, it isn’t surprising.
- Greg Pietras, Queen City Hoops: There’s nothing more entertaining than when Walker goes supernova. Walker checked in with 6:50 to play in the fourth and scored the team’s final 15 points, including a back-breaking three in Curry’s face. Walker has struggled this year, but games like this remind you of his potential.
- John Kim, Blue Man Hoop: The Warriors defense has really been struggling without Iguodala. The Bobcats, who score an average of 90.2 points a game, scored 115 points on .457 shooting. Walker, on multiple occasions, burned Curry and Thompson and found his way to the basket for an easy look or dish.
- Derek James, Rufus on Fire: The Bobcats played above their age tonight, by making their free throws, protecting the ball and tightening up on defense when the game was hanging in the balance. It was impressive and indicative of a well-coached team that was truly tired of losing.