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Howard shines as Hornets top Magic 104-102

ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) Dwight Howard and the Charlotte Hornets needed a win heading into the All-Star break.

So it was perfect timing for a trip to Orlando.

Howard had 22 points and 13 rebounds, and the Hornets stopped a four-game slide by topping the lowly Magic 104-102 on Wednesday night.

Kemba Walker had 20 points for Charlotte on 6-for-19 shooting. Nicolas Batum added 14 points and seven assists in the Hornets' 10th straight win against the Magic.

''We needed this game,'' Howard said. ''Players know the All-Star break is coming so they kind of take a break and are not focused on the game before the break. We had to come out with the right mentality.''

Mario Hezonja led Orlando with 21 points and 10 rebounds, but the Magic lost their third straight. D.J. Augustin and Marreese Speights had 16 points and Bismack Biyombo finished with 11 points and 11 rebounds.

Orlando led 97-96 before Walker hit a 3-pointer with 1:12 to play. Batum hit another 3-pointer with 11 seconds left to stretch Charlotte's lead to 102-97.

The teams traded free throws and Speights hit his fourth 3-pointer as the buzzer sounded.

''This was a huge win,'' said Walker, who believes the Hornets can still make a late run for a playoff berth. ''This gets us one game closer. I know we say take them one at a time, but this is huge coming right before the break.''

Orlando made only four of its last 21 shots. Augustin and Evan Fournier both missed 3-point attempts in the final minute that could have put the Magic back in front.

''They made their last two shots and we didn't,'' coach Frank Vogel said.

Fournier had 13 points, but he didn't score in the second half.

''This is disappointing, really disappointing,'' he said. ''This team (Charlotte) has given us a lot of problems the last few years and not being able to win before the break just does not feel good.''

TIP-INS

Hornets: Walker made a four-point play with 32 seconds left in the first half. ... Howard has 702 career double-doubles, most of any active player in the NBA.

Magic: Jonathon Simmons didn't start the second half, but returned to the game three minutes into the third quarter. ... Orlando is 2-9 in its last 11 home games against Charlotte. ... Augustin broke out of a 1-for-8 shooting slump from 3-point territory, going 4 for 6 from long range.

UP NEXT

Hornets: Host Brooklyn next Thursday. Charlotte has won four straight at home against the Nets.

Magic: Host the New York Knicks next Thursday.

Copyright 2018 by AP. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of AP is strictly prohibited.

Key Players
K. Walker
15 PG
E. Fournier
10 SF
32.4 Min. Per Game 32.4
18.0 Pts. Per Game 18.0
2.9 Ast. Per Game 2.9
3.1 Reb. Per Game 3.1
42.3 Field Goal % 46.1
42.6 Three Point % 46.0
85.2 Free Throw % 87.2
+ 3 Marreese Speights made 3-pt. jump shot, assist by Jonathon Simmons 0:00
+ 1 Jeremy Lamb made 2nd of 2 free throws 0:02
+ 1 Jeremy Lamb made 1st of 2 free throws 0:02
  Personal foul on Mario Hezonja 0:02
  Personal foul on Evan Fournier 0:03
+ 1 Bismack Biyombo made 2nd of 2 free throws 0:04
+ 1 Bismack Biyombo made 1st of 2 free throws 0:04
  Shooting foul on Dwight Howard 0:04
+ 3 Nicolas Batum made 3-pt. jump shot, assist by Jeremy Lamb 0:11
  Offensive rebound by Marvin Williams 0:27
  Kemba Walker missed driving layup 0:29
Team Stats
Points 104 102
Field Goals 38-88 (43.2%) 36-86 (41.9%)
3-Pointers 13-30 (43.3%) 15-37 (40.5%)
Free Throws 15-19 (78.9%) 15-17 (88.2%)
Total Rebounds 48 58
Offensive 8 9
Defensive 37 39
Team 3 10
Assists 26 21
Steals 14 7
Blocks 4 0
Turnovers 12 20
Fouls 15 17
Technicals 0 0
20 PTS, 5 REB, 6 AST
21 PTS, 10 REB, 3 AST
1234T
away team logo Hornets 24-33 20343119104
home team logo Magic 18-39 26272524102
Team Stats
away team logo Hornets 24-33 PPG RPG APG
home team logo Magic 18-39 PPG RPG APG
Key Players
D. Howard C PPG RPG APG FG%
M. Hezonja SG PPG RPG APG FG%
Top Scorers
D. Howard C 22 PTS 13 REB 2 AST
M. Hezonja SG 21 PTS 10 REB 3 AST
43.2 FG% 41.9
43.3 3PT FG% 40.5
78.9 FT% 88.2
Starters MIN PTS REB AST STL BLK TO PF FG 3PT FT OREB DREB FPTS +/-
D. Howard 32 22 13 2 0 2 1 2 9/16 0/0 4/6 2 11 40 +13
K. Walker 41 20 5 6 4 1 1 2 6/19 4/8 4/4 1 4 41 +1
N. Batum 32 14 5 7 1 0 2 0 5/11 4/7 0/0 1 4 32 +12
M. Williams 32 6 6 1 4 0 2 1 2/8 1/5 1/2 2 4 16 +13
M. Kidd-Gilchrist 23 5 2 1 1 0 0 2 2/7 0/0 1/2 0 2 10 -10
Starters MIN PTS REB AST STL BLK TO PF FG 3PT FT OREB DREB FPTS +/-
D. Howard 32 22 13 2 0 2 1 2 9/16 0/0 4/6 2 11 40 +13
K. Walker 41 20 5 6 4 1 1 2 6/19 4/8 4/4 1 4 41 +1
N. Batum 32 14 5 7 1 0 2 0 5/11 4/7 0/0 1 4 32 +12
M. Williams 32 6 6 1 4 0 2 1 2/8 1/5 1/2 2 4 16 +13
M. Kidd-Gilchrist 23 5 2 1 1 0 0 2 2/7 0/0 1/2 0 2 10 -10
Bench MIN PTS REB AST STL BLK TO PF FG 3PT FT OREB DREB FPTS +/-
J. Lamb 25 17 5 3 1 1 4 4 6/10 2/3 3/3 0 5 26 +9
M. Carter-Williams 13 6 2 1 2 0 0 1 2/5 0/2 2/2 1 1 12 -8
C. Zeller 15 6 7 1 1 0 2 1 3/3 0/0 0/0 1 6 14 -10
T. Graham 13 6 0 1 0 0 0 2 2/4 2/3 0/0 0 0 8 -14
F. Kaminsky 9 2 0 3 0 0 0 0 1/5 0/2 0/0 0 0 8 +4
J. Stone - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
M. Paige - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
M. Mathiang - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
W. Hernangomez - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
D. Bacon - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
M. Monk - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Total 235 104 45 26 14 4 12 15 38/88 13/30 15/19 8 37 207 +10
Starters MIN PTS REB AST STL BLK TO PF FG 3PT FT OREB DREB FPTS +/-
M. Hezonja 35 21 10 3 2 0 0 4 10/20 1/6 0/0 2 8 39 -9
D. Augustin 30 16 1 4 1 0 4 2 5/11 4/6 2/2 0 1 22 -3
E. Fournier 30 13 1 1 2 0 2 2 5/15 2/10 1/2 0 1 16 -5
B. Biyombo 25 11 11 1 0 0 0 3 3/7 0/0 5/6 4 7 24 -5
J. Simmons 24 5 5 3 1 0 5 0 2/5 0/1 1/1 0 5 12 -9
Starters MIN PTS REB AST STL BLK TO PF FG 3PT FT OREB DREB FPTS +/-
M. Hezonja 35 21 10 3 2 0 0 4 10/20 1/6 0/0 2 8 39 -9
D. Augustin 30 16 1 4 1 0 4 2 5/11 4/6 2/2 0 1 22 -3
E. Fournier 30 13 1 1 2 0 2 2 5/15 2/10 1/2 0 1 16 -5
B. Biyombo 25 11 11 1 0 0 0 3 3/7 0/0 5/6 4 7 24 -5
J. Simmons 24 5 5 3 1 0 5 0 2/5 0/1 1/1 0 5 12 -9
Bench MIN PTS REB AST STL BLK TO PF FG 3PT FT OREB DREB FPTS +/-
M. Speights 19 16 5 2 0 0 0 2 5/12 4/8 2/2 1 4 25 +9
S. Mack 23 8 7 3 1 0 5 1 2/8 2/3 2/2 1 6 17 +6
A. Afflalo 15 6 1 1 0 0 2 2 2/5 2/3 0/0 0 1 7 +3
W. Iwundu 19 4 7 1 0 0 1 0 1/1 0/0 2/2 1 6 12 0
K. Birch 16 2 0 2 0 0 1 1 1/2 0/0 0/0 0 0 5 +3
N. Vucevic - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
T. Ross - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
J. Artis - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
A. Gordon - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
J. Isaac - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Total 236 102 48 21 7 0 20 17 36/86 15/37 15/17 9 39 179 -10