Thursday, March 27, 2014
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Bobcats Use A Little Luck To Beat Nets In OT

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[March 27, 2014]  CHARLOTTE, N.C.  The basketball gods aren't always kind to the Charlotte Bobcats, but they were on Wednesday night.

The Bobcats got some fortunate bounces down the stretch and used them to pull out a 116-111 overtime win over the Brooklyn Nets.

Forward Chris Douglas-Roberts hit a long jumper at the shot-clock buzzer with 10.1 seconds left in overtime for the game-clincher, after teammate Josh McRoberts' drive in the lane was blocked by Nets center Mason Plumlee directly to Douglas-Roberts in the corner.

That play was symbolic of the Bobcats' good fortune late in the game.

"I could lie to you, but man, it was luck," Douglas-Roberts said. "It came to me, I was in the right place at the right time, I got a good look, and it went down."

The win allowed the Bobcats (35-37) to retain the No. 7 spot in the Eastern Conference standings with plenty of hope left to catch No. 6 Washington with 10 games left in the regular season.

"They say sometimes to win championships it takes a little luck," center Al Jefferson said. "The ball did bounce our way tonight. But I just credit that to the effort we had. We set the tone."


Jefferson led the Bobcats with 35 points and 15 rebounds, marking the 12th time this season he has scored 30 or more.

The Bobcats also got 20 points and 12 assists from guard Kemba Walker, 16 points from Douglas-Roberts, and 12 points from McRoberts.

The Bobcats shot an even 50 percent from the field on 46 of 92, won the rebound battle 49-32, and committed just nine turnovers.

"We're playing better," Bobcats coach Steve Clifford said. "Even the games we've lost lately, we've played well. We're not far away. No question, I feel like tonight we played with low turnovers, inside out, and with ball movement.

"I feel like we're making progress week by week. This was a big win. A good win against a very talented team."

The Bobcats led by as many as nine in the second half, but Nets guard Deron Williams tied it at 105-105 with a long jumper with 26.8 seconds left in regulation. The Bobcats got a break on that play, too, as Williams was just barely on the 3-point line. The Bobcats then failed to get a shot off on their final possession of regulation.

Brooklyn led early in overtime, but McRoberts' dunk with 3:24 left gave the Bobcats the lead for good at 109-108, and then the Bobcats wound up scoring the final four points of the game  two on a jumper by Walker with 43 seconds left and then, after Nets forward Paul Pierce missed a layup, Douglas-Roberts' freak jumper.

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"I thought the defense was great at the end," Nets coach Jason Kidd said. "You look at the end, we come up with a blocked shot, the ball bounces to CDR (Douglas-Roberts) and then he makes a shot with the shot clock running down.

"So I thought we executed. The ball just bounced their way tonight. That's three games in a row now we've got the stops we needed to send the game into overtime, so I saw a lot of positive things late."

For the Nets (37-33), it was their third straight overtime game. They had won in overtime at Dallas and lost in overtime at New Orleans earlier on this three-game road trip.

"The guys fought to the end and we again put ourselves in position to win, so this is a great game for us to learn from," Kidd said. "The last three have been tough, but we're getting better as a team."

Williams led the Nets with 29 points, after scoring 18 in the first quarter. The Nets also got 22 points off the bench from forward Mirza Teletovic, 18 from forward Joe Johnson, and 10 from guard Alan Anderson.

NOTES: The teams wound up splitting their four regular-season games, each winning twice at home. ... Nets G Jorge Gutierrez received a flagrant-2 foul and was ejected with 6:42 left in regulation after hammering Bobcats F Cody Zeller under the basket. ... The Nets were without F Kevin Garnett (back spasms), C Brook Lopez (fractured right foot), G Marcus Thornton (bruised lower back) and F Andrei Kirlenko (sprained left ankle). ... The Bobcats were without G Gary Neal (knee and ankle issues) and coach Steve Clifford said that Neal could wind up missing two or three games. The Bobcats have lost C Brendan Haywood (stress fracture left foot) and F Jeffery Taylor (ruptured right Achilles) for the remainder of the season. ... The Nets will return home to host Cleveland on Friday. ... The Bobcats were closing out a three-game home stand. They will play at Orlando on Friday.

[ 2014 Thomson Reuters. All rights reserved.]

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