Hornets top Magic in OT
Published: Wednesday, January 17, 2007 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Wednesday, January 17, 2007 at 1:28 a.m.
OKLAHOMA CITY - Jannero Pargo scored a season-high 25 points and the New Orleans Hornets held Orlando one basket in overtime to win 84-78 Tuesday night in a matchup of two cold-shooting teams.
Desmond Mason scored 21 points, and Rasual Butler had 19 points and tied his career high with 11 rebounds as the Hornets won their third straight.
Dwight Howard had 17 points and 15 rebounds for the Magic, who lost their third in a row. They were held to a season low in points and shot just 35 percent. New Orleans wasn't much better, hitting a paltry 37.5 percent.
A jumper by Butler to start overtime gave the Hornets a 77-75 lead. Orlando then missed two shots and turned it over twice before Devin Brown sank two free throws for a 79-75 lead. After Mason made one of two free throws with 27.4 seconds left, Butler kept the ball alive and Pargo added two more free throws to make it 82-75 with 23.1 seconds to play.
Orlando's only basket in overtime was a 3-pointer by Keyon Dooling in the final 10 seconds.
A jumper by Pargo with 2:29 left in regulation gave the Hornets a 73-71 lead. Jameer Nelson tied it with a baseline jumper with 36.1 seconds left before Mason sank two free throws with 18.4 to play to put New Orleans in front again.
Howard made one of two free throws with 6.5 seconds remaining. Darko Milicic, who scored 11, was fouled grabbing the rebound of Howard's miss, and he sank the second of two from the line to tie it at 75. Milicic then blocked a driving shot by Pargo with 1.7 seconds left and the Hornets turned it over on the ensuing inbound play as time expired.
After scoring a season-low 33 points in the first half, the Magic started quickly in the third period to get within 42-41. The Hornets responded with a 6-0 run to build the lead to seven points, then Pargo scored 11 of their final 13 to keep them in front. Butler scored 12 of the Hornets' 14 points during one stretch of the second quarter, including eight during a 10-0 run that gave New Orleans its biggest first-half lead, 36-26. The Magic missed five shots and turned it over three times during that stretch.
The Magic scored only 14 points in the second quarter when they were 5-of-17 with six turnovers.
McGrady scored 21 points in the first quarter and had 29 at halftime. He made a 3-pointer that put Houston up 65-52 midway through the third quarter, but it couldn't last.
George answered with a pair of 3s, sparking a 15-2 run that let Dallas tie it. A few minutes later, Nowitzki powered a 20-4 run that he finished off with back-to-back 3s, celebrating each with gusto.
Nowitzki, who was named the conference player of the week earlier in the day, had 30 points, 10 rebounds and six assists. Josh Howard added 28 points and George scored 14 with six assists. Jerry Stackhouse scored 13.
Dallas avenged a 31-point loss at Houston earlier this season and tightened its claim as the hottest team in Texas.
The Mavericks have won five straight games and 18 of 19. The Rockets had won four straight and nine of 10.
McGrady scored Houston's first 12 points and 16 of 18, but obviously couldn't keep it up. Problem was, his roll prevented any of his teammates from getting into a groove. No other Rockets player had more than a single basket until there was 1:51 left until halftime.
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