Blazers storm back to beat Bobcats 118-112 in OT
Posted at: 12/03/2012 10:35 PM
By STEVE REED
(AP) CHARLOTTE, N.C. - LaMarcus Aldridge had 25 points and 13 rebounds, Luke Babbitt hit a pair of clutch 3-pointers and the Portland Trail Blazers overcame an 18-point fourth-quarter deficit to beat the Charlotte Bobcats 118-112 in overtime Monday night.
The Blazers trailed 97-79 with 5:17 left in regulation, but stormed back to tie the score and sent it into overtime on Babbitt’s 3 with 22 seconds left.
Portland never trailed in overtime.
Damian Lillard scored 24 points and Nicolas Batum added 17 points and 13 rebounds for the Blazers, who finished a road trip with two straight wins.
Ben Gordon set a franchise record with eight 3-pointers _ all after halftime _ for the Bobcats, who dropped their fourth straight game. Gordon finished with 29 points to surpass 10,000 for his NBA career.
Charlotte had a chance to win at the end of regulation but Kemba Walker’s drive and fallaway jumper from the baseline didn’t fall. The Bobcats wanted to get the ball to Gordon for the last shot, but he was well covered.
Walker penetrated, pump-faked and got a good shot off that didn’t go down.
Walker finished with 22 points and 17 assists for the Bobcats. Byron Mullens added 12 points and 12 rebounds.
Charlotte led most of the game before J.J. Hickson gave the Blazers their first lead at 63-61 on a fast-break layup with 4:17 left in the third quarter.
But it was short-lived as Gordon began to heat up.
Gordon, who came in shooting 45 percent from 3-point range, made two 3s _ drawing a foul on one for a four-point play _ to give the Bobcats a 75-70 lead at the end of the third.
Charlotte carried the momentum into the fourth quarter opening with a flurry, scoring the first 12 points with Michael Kidd-Gilchrist adding six during the stretch and Gordon hitting two more 3s.
But the Blazers began chipping away as Lillard scored 16 points after halftime.
Charlotte shot 58 percent from the field in the first half, but only led 54-51 lead at the break. The Bobcats hit 13 of their first 18 shots from the field.
The run included a pair of highlight reel plays, including Mullens driving down the lane and leaping over Aldridge for a one-handed dunk. A short time later, Kidd-Gilchrist drove in from the right wing and slammed one home with two hands with authority.
Walker had 17 points in the first half with five assists, but was fairly quiet the rest of the way.
The Blazers stayed close behind Aldridge’s strong play in the paint where he scored 11 points on 5-of-5 shooting.
Charlotte’s Gerald Henderson returned after missing 13 games with a foot injury, but did not start. Henderson played only 15 minutes and scored five points.
(Copyright 2012 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)