CHARLOTTE, NORTH CAROLINA – Kemba Walker said he hasn’t felt this confident shooting the basketball since leading Connecticut to the national championship five years ago.
“I’m shooting it really well,” Walker said.
Walker turned in his fourth straight 30-point game, pouring in 35 to help the Charlotte Hornets hold off the New Orleans Pelicans 122-113 on Wednesday night for their fifth straight win. He has scored at least 20 points in 12 of the last 13 games and the Hornets are 11-2 during that span.
Walker shot 9 of 18 from the field and had five 3-pointers, along with four clutch free throws down the stretch. He also added seven assists and seven rebounds for Charlotte (35-28).
“Courtney Lee had 16 points and Nicolas Batum added 15 as all five Charlotte starters reached double figures in scoring midway through the third quarter.
“Kemba played great and made big plays for them,” Pelicans coach Alvin Gentry said. Charlotte’s win overshadowed strong nights by Anthony Davis and Jure Holiday.
Davis had 40 points and 13 rebounds, while Holiday scored a season-high 38 points.
Warriors 115, Jazz 94
In Oakland, Stephen Curry made a zippy crossover to shed his defender then banked in a 16.8-meter shot at the halftime buzzer, and Golden State beat Utah to extend its record regular-season home winning streak to 46.
Klay Thompson scored 23 points, and Curry wound up with 12 points and 10 assists, while Draymond Green added 17 points, seven rebounds and five assists as the Warriors (57-6) improved to 28-0 at Oracle Arena this season.
Thunder 120, Clippers 108
In Oklahoma City, Russell Westbrook had 25 points, a career-high 20 assists and 11 rebounds and Kevin Durant poured in 30 points to help the Thunder top Los Angeles.
Cavaliers 120, Kings 111
In Sacramento, Kevin Love converted a four-point play with 1:32 remaining, Kyrie Irving scored 30 points and Cleveland hung on to defeat the Kings.
Celtics 116, Grizzlies 96
In Boston, Isaiah Thomas scored 16 of his 22 points in the third quarter, when the Celtics turned a three-point deficit into a 16-point lead before coasting to their 14th straight home victory.
Pistons 102, Mavericks 96
In Dallas, Marcus Morris scored 20 points, including two 3s during a decisive fourth-quarter run, and Andre Drummond had 25 points and 17 rebounds for Detroit.
Bucks 114, Heat 108
In Milwaukee, Giannis Antetokounmpo scored 24 points and Khris Middleton made four free throws in the closing seconds.
Rockets 118, 76ers 104
In Philadelphia, James Harden scored 29 points and Dwight Howard added 21 points and 18 rebounds to help Houston pound the hosts.
Knicks 128, Suns 97
In Phoenix, Sasha Vujacic scored a season-high 23 points in a rare start and Carmelo Anthony had 23 points in a rout of the Suns.
Lovellette dies at 86
Lawrence Kansas AP
Clyde Lovellette, the Hall of Famer who helped the U.S. win gold at the 1952 Helsinki Olympics as well as capturing three NBA titles, died Wednesday after a battle with cancer. He was 86.
Lovellette’s family said he died at his home in Indiana.
The 208-cm Lovellette played 11 seasons in the NBA, averaging 17.0 points and 9.5 rebounds in 704 regular-season games with Minneapolis, Cincinnati, St. Louis and Boston. The four-time All-Star forward helped Minneapolis win the NBA title as a rookie in 1954 and was on Boston’s championship teams in 1963 and 1964 in his last two seasons in the league.