Toronto Raptors vs Charlotte Hornets - Game Report - March 24, 2019
BarnBurner Sports Writer
Sunday, March 24, 2019
Jeremy Lamb was asked whether he remembered the last time he hit a half court buzzer-beater.
“In my driveway, growing up, counting down by myself.”
The Toronto Raptors thought they had won Sunday night’s game against the Charlotte Hornets, until Lamb gave the crowd at Scotiabank Arena a taste of March Madness, banking a half-court shot at the buzzer to give the Hornets a 115-114 win over the Raptors.
Lambs winning shot was from 48 feet, making it the second longest game-winning buzzer beater in the past 20 seasons.
Kawhi Leonard hit the go-ahead basket with 44 seconds left then blocked Kemba Walker on the other end to give Toronto the edge. Leonard then missed a jumper with 5 seconds left. Pascal Siakam knocked the inbounds pass away from Lamb, who chased the ball before wiring the game-winning three.
“He made a tough shot. I don’t know how I could have defended it better. Yeah, March Madness”
The Raptors started off the night with a shuffle in the lineup, with coach Nick Nurse saying “Were shuffling through it a little bit. Well probably see how the flow of the game goes, give everybody a chance in the first half and take it from there.”
It worked for the first quarter as Toronto started off strong especially on defense and built up a 32-37 lead after one.
Then, it stopped.
In the second, the Hornets went on a 13-0 run to give them the lead, and in less than five minutes, went from down 8 points to up by 8 points. Bad turnovers and inconstant play were the keys to the Raptors being down 58-57 at the half.
Then it went from bad to worse.
The Hornets managed to score 10 3-pointers in the third out of 15 attempts, with a 95-83 lead built heading into the fourth.
Toronto amped up their defense in the fourth quarter, and while the Hornets got themselves into foul trouble, the Raptors stayed consistent and managed to tie it up at 110 with Siakam, but it wasn’t enough.
The Hornets, who are fighting for a playoff spot, came into this game 2 ½ games behind the Heat for the eighth and final playoff spot in the East.