VegasInsider.com
VI Mobile Scores and Betting OddsVI Mobile Scores and Betting Odds Be Social
Home
NFL
NBA
NHL
MLB
NCAA FB
NCAA BK
Golf
Auto
Horses
Soccer
Fantasy Sports
More
Betting Tools

 
Bobcats polish off Nuggets, 105-98

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) - The Charlotte Bobcats are getting used to big nights from Al Jefferson and Kemba Walker.

Advertisement
Now, they have Gary Neal to throw into the offensive mix.

The newly acquired Neal came off the bench and scored 19 points as the surging Bobcats won their seventh home game in a row, defeating the Denver Nuggets 105-98 on Monday night.

Jefferson led all scorers with 26 points and Walker scored 24, but it was Neal's work off the bench that may have made the biggest difference with Gerald Henderson out with a strained right calf muscle.

''It was a huge to get a win at home and protect our homecourt, especially with the standings the way they are,'' said Neal, who was playing in his only his seventh game with the team since coming over from Milwaukee in a trade on Feb. 20.

''I felt good in the (Monday) morning shootaround and had a good individual workout before the game,'' Neal added. ''Then, the first couple shots fell and I got in a good rhythm.''

Neal actually made his first six field-goal tries as the Bobcats, currently in position to grab the No. 7 seed in the Eastern Conference for the playoffs, improved to 30-34. Three of those baskets by Neal were 3-pointers.

The Nuggets, who fell to 27-36, were led by Ty Lawson's 24 points - 15 of which came in the fourth quarter as he tried to rally his team.

''They were without Gerald Henderson and Gary Neal stepped in and did what he needed to do,'' Nuggets coach Brian Shaw said. ''We have to learn to respect everyone, whether he's a starter or coming off the bench.''

Jefferson made 10 of his first 14 field-goal attempts, and also contributed a game-high 13 rebounds. Walker added seven assists for the Bobcats.

Jefferson scored 12 points and grabbed seven rebounds in the first quarter, after which the Bobcats led 25-22. But they actually extended their lead to 12 in the second quarter, as Neal scored nine points.

''That boy can score. He made plays, that's all,'' Jefferson said of Neal. ''If he can play like that, it's going to give a big lift to the second unit. With him hitting 3s like that, that's just going to open up the paint for guys like me who like to attack it.''

Josh McRoberts added 15 points for Charlotte, including a key 3-pointer with 6:15 left at the shot-clock buzzer to extend Charlotte's lead to 90-82 after Denver had cut it to five.

Denver also got 15 points from Kenneth Faried, 16 from Aaron Brooks, and 11 points and a team-high 10 rebounds from J.J. Hickson.

After Faried led a brief Denver comeback to cut Charlotte's lead to 51-45 at the half, Walker and Jefferson hit the first two baskets of the third quarter to push the Charlotte advantage back to 10 and the home team never trailed in the second half.

Denver did pull to within 101-96 in the final minute, but Walker, who made all 12 of his free-throw attempts on the night, hit a pair with 55.6 seconds left and then Jefferson hit a jumper after a defensive stop to seal the Bobcats' victory.

''We hung in there and fought hard,'' Bobcats coach Steve Clifford said. ''It wasn't our best game. We made a lot of mistakes in the fourth quarter. But it's a good win and an important win for our team.''

Clifford said Neal, who has now scored in double figures in six of the seven games he's played for the Bobcats, is providing the kind of instant offense that he had hoped for when Neal was acquired from the Bucks along with backup point guard Luke Ridnour.

''He played great,'' Clifford said. ''Forget the 7-for-9 (field-goal shooting). He made two big plays out of the pick-and-roll when we were struggling. They blitzed Kemba and Gary Neal hit CDR (Chris Douglas-Roberts) for a big 3 and he started the ball movement on another pick-and-roll that led to a Kemba jumper. He's the one who kind of got our offense back on track.''

NOTES: Clifford said Henderson, who missed Monday's game and has been out a week with a strained right calf muscle, might attempt running during Tuesday's practice. He hopes Henderson will be available to resume playing in games soon. Clifford said that likely won't occur until next week, however. ... The Bobcats have 18 home wins, three more than all of last year.

Copyright 2017 by STATS LLC and Associated Press.
Any commercial use or distribution without the express written
consent of STATS LLC and Associated Press is strictly prohibited.

  
HEADLINES
Mejia: Thursday's NBA Essentials
Sportsbook.ag: Thursday's Best Bet
Lawrence: Playoff Zig-Zag Theory
News: First Round Series Odds
Bulls PG Rondo a 'long shot' to return
Curry's latest UA shoe doing poorly
Williams turns it on for Cavs in playoffs
Knicks C Noah undergoes rotator surgery
'NBA Awards' show to include highlights
MORE HEADLINES
 
Why Buy Picks From VegasInsider.com
NBA Pro Basketball Handicapper Sports Picks Records
NBA Hot Streaks
4-0 L4, 31-15 Run, 4-1 G-Plays
11-4 Playoffs, 19-5 L24 Streak
10-5 L15 Totals, +2,394 This Year
5-0 L5 Guarantees, 5-1 L6 Totals
4-0 L4 G-Plays, 4-1 L3 Days
7-1 L8 Totals, 11-4 L15 Picks
2-0 Last Night, 13-6 L19 Totals
9-3 L12 Streak, 5-2 L7 G-Plays
22-9 L31 Guaranteed Plays
4-1 Last 5 Over/Unders
+1,671 Guaranteed Plays TY
40-21 L61 Picks, 34-17 L51 GPlays
5-2 L7 Guaranteed Plays
19-9 L28 G-Plays, 27-14 L41 Picks
7-3 L10 Postseason Guarantees
+3,045 G-Plays This Year
7-3 Record L10 Guarantees
NBA Pro Basketball Expert Sports Picks - San Antonio Spurs at Memphis Grizzlies
2016 NBA SEASON PICK RECORDS
Money Leaders
Handicapper Money
Alex Smart + 2489
NeiltheGreek + 2394
Chip Chirimbes + 1197
Last 7 Day Leaders
Handicapper Money
NeiltheGreek + 437
Jimmy Boyd + 378
Paul Bovi + 372
Percentage Leaders
Handicapper Pct
Jim Feist 56 %
Alex Smart 55 %
Kyle Hunter 55 %
Guaranteed Leaders
Handicapper Money
Alex Smart + 3045
Chip Chirimbes + 1671
ASA + 1555
Over-Under Leaders
Handicapper Money
NeiltheGreek + 2014
Bill Marzano + 1338
Paul Bovi + 745
Member Leaders
Handicapper Money
Kevin Rogers + 1411
Bruce Marshall + 1372
Gary Bart + 1219
MORE PICK RECORDS
  
corner graphic
With a VI Gold Membership, you can SAVE 10% off a Live Odds subscription, SAVE 20% off Daily Pick packages, and receive access to up to 1,000 Member Plays each month!
VI Gold Membership