NBA Game Summary - Phoenix at New Orleans
(Wednesday, December 3rd)
Final Score: New Orleans 104, Phoenix 91
New Orleans, LA (Sports Network) - Chris Paul handed out 15 assists and added 24 points, as the Hornets continued their dominance over the Phoenix Suns in a 104-91 decision at New Orleans Arena.
Peja Stojakovic hit five three-pointers on his way to a season-high 24-point effort for New Orleans, which has won five of six overall and six consecutive against Phoenix. David West finished with 23 points and 14 rebounds in the resounding win.
Phoenix played without two key components, as Steve Nash sat out with flu-like symptoms and Shaquille O'Neal rested his 36-year-old legs. The loss of O'Neal especially hurt, as the Hornets owned a 46-30 edge on the glass.
"I thought we came out and played pretty good tonight, we just didn't have enough at the end," Suns head coach Terry Porter said. "Offensive rebounds really hurt us, and those guys got to the line a lot. We couldn't get offensive rebounds and make those shots when we needed to."
Amare Stoudemire scored 26 points but gathered just four boards for the Suns, who have dropped three straight. Leandro Barbosa and Grant Hill chipped in 19 and 17 points, respectively, in the loss.
Up by two after a Stojakovic three early in the third, the Hornets were held without a field goal for nearly seven minutes in the quarter. Phoenix didn't take advantage, however, and held just a three-point lead before New Orleans went on a 22-6 run to end the frame.
Stojakovic nailed a pair from the perimeter and added a three-point play to highlight the spurt that allowed the Hornets to take an 82-69 lead to the fourth.
"In the third quarter we came out with a lot of energy just like we did to start the game," Paul said. "We got stops, we got out in transition, and Peja (Stojakovic) hit a lot of big shots for us."
The advantage remained in double figures until Hill's three-point play made it a 91-82 game with 5:16 to play.
After exchanging field goals, Stojakovic finished off his stellar game with another three-ball, and the Hornets sunk 8-of-8 free throws down the stretch to finalize the win.
As per usual, it was the tale of two quarters in the first half. The Hornets jumped out to 35-21 lead after one period of play behind solid outside shooting.
Matt Barnes brought the Suns back single-handedly with a 10-point second quarter, which included a pair of makes from behind the arc, as the visitors trailed just 51-50 at the break.
Phoenix fell for just the third time in 10 road chances...Barnes ended with 13 points and seven rebounds for Phoenix, while Tyson Chandler compiled 14 points and nine rebounds for New Orleans, which shot 30-of-35 from the foul line compared to Phoenix's 10-of-13 efficiency at the stripe...Paul also had three steals and has recorded a steal in 100 consecutive games, becoming only the second player in NBA history to do so, as he is now five games behind Alvin Robertson's record of 105.
12/03 23:36:53 ET