The Hornets, losers of four straight games, faced the Cavaliers coming off a three game losing streak of their own. Unfortunately for fans attending the game, Lebron James was inactive (and will be for the foreseeable future). However, this was good news for the Hornets' players.
The game started well for Charlotte, holding the Cavaliers to 16 first quarter points and scoring 25 of their own. Cody Zeller had a killer dunk off the pick-and-roll from Kemba Walker that brought the fans to their feet. In general, the game seemed much more open and free flowing than usual, with Gerald Henderson also heavily involved in both the post and the pick-and-roll.
With the game starting to feel like one Charlotte could run away with, the Hornets gave up an 8-0 run late in the second quarter. A Gary Neal 3-pointer to end the half kept the lead at six points (46-40).
Then the third quarter happened. After appearing to get hurt, Kevin Love came back and drained three straight 3-pointers in the face of Cody Zeller. That brought Marvin Williams into the game and spaced the floor for Cleveland, which opened everything up for Dion Waiters, who had an incredible third quarter of his own. The Hornets found themselves trailing going into the fourth quarter 72-64 after being outscored 32-18.
It felt like a game that was up for grabs, but the Hornets just didn't play well enough to win. They had too many turnovers, gave up too many offensive rebounds, and played bad defenders for far too many minutes. At least Zeller had two Vine worthy plays.