Jeremy Lamb lifts Hornets over Raptors…Again

Toronto Raptors will be hoping that they can avoid Jeremy Lamb in the playoffs.

Lamb has now been vital in two wins over the Raptors in the last two weeks. He knocked down a 27-footer with only 3.3 seconds remaining, to help the Hornets to a 113-111 win over Toronto.

The game-winning shot last time out occurred when Lamb hit an unlikely half-court buzzer-beater to shock the Raptors in March. The game will undoubtedly go down as one of the craziest finishes in the NBA this season.

Fred VanFleet was quick to congratulate Lamb. He said: “He’s made two great shots — tonight’s was a little easier than the other one.

“Give them credit, those guys are making plays, and they’re playing for their playoff lives, and you can see it in their energy and enthusiasm they have.”

Elsewhere, Kemba Walker scored 29 points. Also, Lamb finished with 22 points. Frank Kaminsky added the other 22 points and 13 rebounds for Charlotte. The win keeps their slim playoff hopes alive and also exceeded their win total in each of the last two campaigns.

Charlotte are two games behind eighth-placed Brooklyn in the Eastern Conference. However, with only three games remaining; it will be close-call.

The match-winning basket from Lamb was the fourth winning shot that he has made this season. However, he was quick to point on the crucial role that Walker played.

He said: “Man, Kemba made a great pass, and everybody said if I get it, shoot it. I just tried to shoot it with confidence.”

Meanwhile, Kawhi Leonard finished with 29 points for the Raptors. However, he missed a vital fall-away jumper with one second remaining. Also, Serge Ibaka scored 20 points and 12 rebounds. Kyle Lowry recorded 16 points and 11 assists for Toronto. The loss signaled an end to their five-game winning streak.

The fixture was virtually meaningless for the Raptors. As they have already locked down their position as the number two seed of the Eastern Conference.

However, Leonard had previously given the Raptors the lead. Leonard spun around a defender near the foul line and put away a layup off the glass with 15 seconds remaining.

From here, Walker powerfully drove down the length of the court and drew a double team. Before kicking it out to Lamb near the top of the key. Lamb then found nothing but net.

Leonard’s fall-away 19-footer got stuck between the backboard and the rim with one second remaining on the clock.

Nick Nurse wasn’t too fazed by Leonard’s miss. Speaking to reporters after the game, he said: “They switched it pretty good and got him down there.

“But it wasn’t too bad (of a shot) with 3.3 to go that we got Kawhi the ball. He had been hitting everything in sight up until that point.”

The game was a carbon copy of the previous fixture between the two teams from a couple of weeks ago. The Raptors jumped to an early lead, only for the Hornets to take control once desperation kicked in. IF the two are to meet again in the playoffs, the Raptors will have to rectify this.

Peace,

Burke.

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