NBA Game Summary - Minnesota at New Orleans/Oklahoma City
(Wednesday, November 23rd)
Final Score: New Orleans/Oklahoma City 84, Minnesota 80
Oklahoma City, OK (Sports Network) - Chris Paul had 21 points, nine rebounds and eight assists to rally New Orleans/Oklahoma City past Minnesota, 84-80, at the Ford Center.
Forward David West scored a team-best 22 points and collected 13 rebounds for the Hornets, who have won three of their last four. P.J. Brown also had a double-double with 13 points and 10 boards to help the Hornets erase a large first half deficit.
"I just have ultimate confidence in David West," Paul said. "When he pops, I am just looking to hit him so that he can shoot it."
Kevin Garnett had a game-high 24 points and added 11 rebounds and five assists for Minnesota, which dropped to 0-4 on the road.
Troy Hudson contributed 17 points off the bench, while center Michael Olowokandi scored 11 points in defeat.
Minnesota led by as many as 18 points in the second quarter, and took a 48-36 advantage into the locker room after Garnett nailed a long jumper in the final seconds.
The Hornets opened the third quarter on a 10-4 run, however, and continued to chip away at the lead behind Paul's 19 second-half points.
New Orleans/Oklahoma City later ripped off a 7-0 run to take a 79-74 advantage with 1:30 remaining and set up a wild finish.
Eddie Griffin made a layup with 1:03 left on the game clock to pull the Timberwolves within three.
After Paul missed a jumper at the other end, Garnett hoisted a three-pointer that hit off of the back rim. Paul collected the rebound and was fouled. He hit one-of-two from the free throw line to make it 80-76.
Then, after Garnett and J.R. Smith exchanged free throws, Garnett nailed a jumper in the closing seconds, then stole the inbounds pass. His ensuing jump shot rimmed out, however, and West gathered the rebound with three seconds left to secure the win for the Hornets.
"We have to play with this kind of energy every night," West said. "If we bring this effort, we are going to give ourselves a chance to win the game."
Minnesota had won seven in a row and 10 of the last 11 contests in this series...The Hornets are 3-3 at home this season...The Hornets will visit Seattle, Golden State and Denver on their upcoming road swing...Minnesota returns home on Friday to host Michael Redd and the Milwaukee Bucks.
11/23 23:30:37 ET