Bobcats Defeat Thunder After Slow Start

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Charlotte Bobcats vs Thunder 3/17/10

The Bobcats scored another win, 100-92, over the visiting Oklahoma City Thunder on Wednesday night.  The Cats had to overcome an awful start that had them down by as much as 19 points late in the second quarter.  Stephen Jackson led the Cats in scoring with 20 points; Kevin Durant led all scorers with 26.

AP recap here |  Box score here

The Bobcats poor start seemed to be due to a general malaise; meanwhile, the Thunder were making it all look so easy.  The trio of Russell Westbrook, Jeff Green and Kevin Durant did most of the damage as the Thunder built their big lead.  But the Cats woke up for a quick 11-0 run in the last couple minutes of the second quarter to seize the momentum.

They kept it going in the third quarter, winning the frame 30-19 and overtaking the Thunder for the lead.  As usual, the run was keyed by the defense.  When the Cats weren’t racking up blocks inside, they were forcing contested jumpers outside.  Durant may have led all scorers with 26, but he needed 26 shots to do it (9-26 FG, 0-7 3PT).

The Thunder threatened briefly in the fourth quarter, cutting the Bobcats lead down to one at one point.  But Stephen Jackson soon responded with a three and the Cats were able to keep the Thunder at arms length the rest of the way.

Stephen Graham

Dude gets his own section.  After setting a new career high in last night’s loss to the Pacers with 19 points, Graham got another start for the injured Gerald Wallace… and responded by tying his new career high with 19 again (7-9 FG, 1-1 3PT, 4-6 FT).  Graham added 5 rebounds and a block to go along with his efficient offensive performance in 30 minutes of playing time.

In the three games Graham has started for Gerald, he is averaging 16.6 points and 6.3 rebounds in 30 minutes per game.  Huge.

Tidbits

  • In case you missed it, the NBA’s board of governors unanimously approved Michael Jordan’s bid to but the Bobcats today, so it’s all nice and official now.
  • Speaking of, apparently bobcats.com will be posting a Q&A with His Airness in the morning, while Stephanie Ready has scored the first on camera interview since he became owner; this will air during the Hawks game Friday night.
  • The Cats are now 35-32 overall (25-8 at home) and alone in 6th place in the East.  5th place Milwaukee just lost, which brings the Cats to within a game-and-a-half of them.  Behind the Cats, the Heat were off Wednesday and are just a half game back.  8th place Toronto won a thriller to keep pace, while Chicago lost their ninth in a row to fall further out of the race.
  • The Bobcats (and Gerald’s ankle) have a day off before a tough Southeast Division road back-to-back in Atlanta and Miami on Friday and Saturday.  Good luck, Cats.

-Dr. E

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3 Responses to “Bobcats Defeat Thunder After Slow Start”

  1. Ross
    March 17, 2010 at 11:42 pm #

    Good win, it was also nice to see Felton have a solid game as well(0 TO). Thats the first place I look in the box score. This weekend it doesn't get any easier, the Hawks and Heat are a tough test on the road, the Cats need to attack in these games to show they are ready for the big time. Tough games late in the season are a good thing for a team to face, it means the season is starting to payoff. This team on the court at least seems heading in the right direction.

  2. ASChin
    March 18, 2010 at 3:18 am #

    Is it time to start talking about a Stephen Graham contract extension yet?

    Dude has proven that he belongs in the League this year.

    Something a little over the veteran's minimum with a couple of guaranteed years sounds fair.

  3. Ross
    March 18, 2010 at 9:59 pm #

    I agree, it would be nice to see him finish strong, for consistency's sake. But I think he has played his role pretty well.

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