Raptors fall to Bobcats
CHARLOTTE, N.C.—Gerald Henderson is enjoying the best streak of his four-year NBA career—and the Charlotte Bobcats are playing better, too.
Henderson turned in another solid all-around game, and Byron Mullens scored 25 points, as the Bobcats beat the Toronto Raptors 107-101 last night to win consecutive games for the first time since mid-November.
The soon-to-be restricted free agent is averaging 22.7 points on 50 percent shooting in his last seven games, including a 35-point performance in a win over Boston on March 12.
But he’s more willing to talk about the team’s recent improvement than his own personal accomplishments.
“I think it’s just us maturing,” Henderson said. “I think that’s a big deal.
“We’ve been in a lot of situations where we haven’t gotten it done in the fourth quarter, but we have recently so that’s good.”
With the Raptors keying on him in the final period, Henderson played the role of distributor and the Bobcats leaned heavily on Mullens and Ben Gordon down the stretch.
Mullens scored 12 points in the fourth quarter while Gordon had 11 as Charlotte’s reserves outscored their counterparts 52-13.
The seven-foot Mullens made his final eight free throws, including four with less than 13 seconds to go, as Charlotte won its third-straight at home.
“We’re going back to the way we were playing at the beginning of the season,” Mullens said, referring to the team’s 7-5 start.
“I don’t want to get way over to the top with this because it’s just two wins,” he stressed. “But we’ll take it for what it is.
“It’s been a while since we’ve had that so I’m going to enjoy it.”
Rudy Gay had 25 points and DeMar DeRozan added 19 points for the Raptors, who now have lost seven of their last eight games in Charlotte and fell to 9-25 this season on the road.
“It stinks because we just had a great practice and came in here ready to win,” Gay said.
“I guess we just have to go back to the drawing board.”
Elsewhere in the NBA, Miami beat Cleveland 98-95, New York downed Orlando 106-94, Atlanta upended Milwaukee 98-90, Brooklyn dumped Dallas 113-96, Houston bounced Utah 100-93, and New Orleans shaded Boston 87-86.
San Antonio beat Golden State 104-93, Memphis nipped Oklahoma City 90-89 (OT), Washington downed Phoenix 88-79, and the L.A. Clippers routed Philadelphia 101-72.