LaMelo, Lonzo battle as Pelicans fall 118-110 to Hornets



NEW ORLEANS (AP) – Gordon Hayward scored 26 points and the Charlotte Hornets methodically came back from an 18-point, second-quarter deficit to beat the New Orleans Pelicans 118-110 on Friday night.

Miles Bridges scored 20 points and Devonte Graham had 17 for the Hornets, who didn’t take their first lead until the fourth quarter, when they outscored New Orleans 36-23.

Zion Williamson scored 26 points and Josh Hart had 19 for the Pelicans, who’ve lost three straight, all at home. Brandon Ingram added 17 points but was 3-of-10 shooting. JJ Redick also scored 17 points

The game marked the first time brothers Lonzo and LaMelo Ball – both top-three draft choices within the past four years – played against one another. LaMelo Ball, picked third overall in 2020, had the better night, nearly notching a triple-double with 12 points, 11 rebounds and nine assists.

LaMelo Ball hit a 3 with his brother guarding him and also blocked his brother’s driving layup, forcing a jump ball that Lonzo, who at 6-foot-6 is an inch shorter than his brother, was able to win to a teammate.

Lonzo Ball, a second overall draft pick by the Los Angeles Lakers in 2017, missed 6 of 7 3-point shots and finished with five points.

The Pelicans led by double digits most of the first half and by 18 points when Redick’s 3 made it 47-29 in the middle of the second quarter.

New Orleans was still up 59-47 to open the second half, but Charlotte quickly began tightening things up.

Terry Rozier hit a 3 and Hayward added short jumper and another 3, cutting the lead to 62-55.

Another 3 by Hayward, two more by Rozier and one by Bridges in a span of less than three minutes got the Hornets within 72-69.

The Pelicans gradually rebuilt their lead to eight late in the period, but LaMelo Ball hit a step-back 3 while being defended by his brother to make it 87-82 heading into the final quarter.

Graham’s driving right-handed floater as he was fouled by Nickeil Alexander-Walker put Charlotte up for the first time at 105-103 with 5:46 to go. Hayward’s 3 with 3:43 left put the Hornets ahead 109-105.

TIP-INS

Hornets: Rozier finished with 15 points and Bismack Biyombo scored 11. … Charlotte outrebounded the Pelicans 45-36 and turned 16 offensive rebounds into 26 second-chance points.

Pelicans: New Orleans committed 19 turnovers, leading to 27 Charlotte points. … The Pelicans lost despite outshooting the Hornets 49.4% (38 of 77) to 47.1 % (41 of 87), as well as 39.5% (15 of 39) to 38.1% (16 of 42) from 3-point range. … New Orleans completed a four-game home stand at 1-3.

UP NEXT

Hornets: Host Atlanta on Saturday night in the first of three straight at home.

Pelicans: Visit Dallas on Monday night to begin a seven-game road trip.





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