The Bobcats bench put up 48 points led by 17 from Gerald Henderson and 16 from Ramon Sessions but Charlotte could not pull out a victory, falling 113-90 on December 13 in Atlanta.
It’s tough to say the first half was the turning point, but the first 24 minutes decided the outcome of this one as Atlanta took a 60-43 lead into the break… The Hawks did most of their damage in the first half behind the arc where they connected on nine 3-pointers in 15 attempts for 60.0 percent. Devin Harris led the way for Atlanta with three treys and 16 total points in the first half… As hot as the Hawks were from long range, they were equally effective from the field overall, outshooting Charlotte 62.9 percent (22-for-35) to 35.9 percent (14-for-39) in the half… A Bobcats starting lineup averaging 21.5 years old showed some growing pains early on, as Byron Mullens (0-for-7), Bismack Biyombo (0-for-1), Michael Kidd-Gilchrist (1-2) and Jeffery Taylor (1-for2) combined to shoot 16.7 percent (2-for-12) in the first half. Both Biyombo and MKG spent extended time on the bench with three early fouls apiece… Atlanta opened the third quarter on a 14-5 lead to extend the lead to 74-48, and despite battling back, the Cats could not do enough to climb out of the first half hole they dug.
INSIDE THE BOX SCORE
Shooting percentage and rebounding told the story in Atlanta, where the Hawks connected on 57.3 percent (43-for-75) from the field and 48.3 percent (14-for-29) from 3-point range. The Bobcats hit 43.0 percent (34-for-79) of their field goals and 28.6 percent (6-for-21) of their treys. Charlotte did outshoot Atlanta, 80.0 percent (16-for-20) to 56.5 percent (13-for-23) from the free-throw line… The Hawks outrebounded the Cats, 41-31, and outscored Charlotte, 11-4, in second-chance points.
BOBCATS PLAYER OF THE GAME
Gerald Henderson continues to provide a spark for the Cats as a reserve as he works his way back from the foot injury that cost him 13 games early this season. He scored a team-high 17 points to go with three rebounds, three assists and a steal.
Byron Mullens lead the Bobcats in scoring with 19 points on 8-for-15 shooting from the floor and 2-for-4 from 3-point territory. Mullens also grabbed eight rebounds, had two assists and a block.
HAWKS PLAYER OF THE GAME
Devin Harris was key for the Hawks in this one, tallying a game-high 20 points on 7-for-11 shooting, including 4-for-8 from 3-point range. He also added four assists and one rebound.
INSIDE THE LOCKER ROOM
"We had some breakdowns on defense that hurt us tonight. When we play good defense, it feeds our offense, and that didn’t happen tonight. We’ve been giving up a lot of points early on recently. Giving up 30 points in the first quarter puts us in a bad situation early, and that’s hard to play out of. When you dig a hole like that, it’s going to be tough. But we’re going to stay together. We’re a young team, but we will stay together, and hopefully we’ll start playing better and getting some breaks as well."
- Bobcats Guard Jeffery Taylor on their defense
"We played poor defensively and gave them too many easy baskets in transition, with some of those coming off our turnovers. Secondly, our work hard area is rebounding, and we did a very poor job of that tonight. When those things let us down, we struggle. After some film session, we’ll be very clear detail-wise that we have to improve at the defensive end of the floor. That’s where time will be spent between now and Saturday. We’re spotting teams too many points early. We did that against the Clippers, and that wasn’t good either. Some of that is just sheer energy, and some of it is the run-outs by our opponent, which really hurt us."
- Bobcats Head Coach Mike Dunlap on the game
Almost every Bobcat who played in this one found his way on the score sheet as 12 of 13 players scored at least two points. The only Cat not to score was newcomer Jeff Adrien, who had three rebounds and one blocked shot in his debut for Charlotte… Kemba Walker led the Bobcats starters with 13 points and six assists to go with three steals… Jeffery Taylor was the only other starter to hit double figures, finishing with 12 points and two rebounds… The Bobcats are now 0-3 against the Hawks this season… Atlanta moves to 4-0 this season in the second half of back-to-back sets… Tyrus Thomas (calf) was inactive.
The Bobcats return to Time Warner Cable at 7 p.m. on Saturday night to take on the Magic. It will be the Cats last game at home until December 26 against Miami, as they head out on a four-game West Coast swing next week. If you can’t make it out Saturday, watch the game on SportSouth or listen on WFNZ. Follow the live in-game chat at bobcats.com or download the app on your smartphone.