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Bridges, Hornets Thump Knicks Without LaMelo Ball

The Hornets move to 24-20 on the season.

New York, NY - No LaMelo Ball? No problem. The Charlotte Hornets blew past the New York Knicks Monday afternoon with a 97-87 win. Ball did not play due to a non-COVID related illness.

Slow starts have been a reoccurring issue for the Hornets this season but maybe that's because of the usual 7 p.m. starts. The Monday matinee proved to be no problem for Charlotte as they jumped out to a quick 7-0 lead and held the Knicks scoreless through the first two minutes of play. New York's first field goal came two and a half minutes into the game on a three ball by R.J. Barrett.

Miles Bridges had the hot hand from the opening tip, notching eight of the team's first 11 points. He finished with 22 points in the first, marking the first 20-point quarter of his young career.

The Knicks took a 12-11 lead for a short time before the Hornets went on a long 14-3 run to get out to a comfortable lead. At the end of the quarter, Charlotte held a 34-23 lead.

New York had a carbon copy start to that of the Hornets in the first by going on a 7-0 run to open up the second quarter. Charlotte struggled to find the bottom of the net while Miles Bridges was getting a quick breather on the bench, forcing Borrego to call a timeout and get Bridges back on the floor. 

The Hornets responded with a 13-3 run which started with a four-point possession on a Gordon Hayward jumper. Obi Toppin was called for a foul on the shot, Hayward missed the free throw, the Hornets grabbed the rebound, Hayward misfired on a three, but Bridges was right there to slam it home for a putback dunk. Charlotte took a 62-44 lead into the locker room.

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After the first half, the Knicks really tried to slow the pace down and did so successfully. However, they were never able to get back within reach despite outscoring the Hornets 20-11 in the fourth quarter.

Miles Bridges was quiet for much of the third before heating back up to finish the night with 38 points, 12 rebounds, and five assists.

The Hornets will now hop on the train to Boston as they gear up for a Wednesday night matchup against the Celtics inside TD Garden. Tip-off is scheduled for 7 p.m. EST and will be televised on ESPN.

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