Hornets power forward Anthony Davis tries to block a shot by Lakers forward… (Gerald Herbert / Associated…)
Lakers 108, Hornets 102 (final)
The Lakers came back from a 25-point deficit to stun the Hornets in New Orleans.
With their playoff hopes seemingly on the brink, the Lakers rattled off 20 unanswered points to close out a 108-102 victory on Wednesday night. The Lakers scored 33 points while holding the Hornets to nine in the final quarter.
New Orleans scored its final points on a Robin Lopez dunk with 6:47 left in the fourth quarter.
Kobe Bryant led the Lakers with 42 points and 12 assists. Dwight Howard had 20 points and 15 rebounds including a key block on Lopez with 27.1 seconds left and the Lakers up by just two.
The Lakers shot 48.7% from the field and 39.3% from three-point range (11-28). Jodie Meeks contributed 19 off the bench, converting five three-point shots.
The Hornets had seven players in double figures but made mistake after mistake after mistake in the fourth quarter. Key turnovers, fouls and defensive lapses by New Orleans gave the Lakers their opportunities to steal the win.
The Lakers took advantage out of desperation, winning on the second night of back-to-back games. The team improved to 31-31, gaining a game on the Utah Jazz (32-29), who lost earlier Wednesday in Cleveland.
The Jazz are technically 1 1/2 games ahead of the Lakers but the lead in reality is 2 1/2 given Utah owns the head-to-head tiebreaker.
The Hornets fell to 21-41 on the season.
Hornets 93, Lakers 75 (end of third quarter)
The Lakers closed to within 15 points but Metta World Peace picked up his fifth foul midway through the third quarter and the Hornets were able to push their lead back to more than 20 points at one point.
The Hornets are shooting 52.3% from the field and 47.1% from three-point range (eight of 17) for the game. Eric Gordon leads New Orleans with 18 points.
The Lakers got 24 points from Kobe Bryant, who also has eight assists. Dwight howard has 1 points and seven boards entering the fourth quarter.
The Hornets have dominated the boards, 40-23.
Hornets 67, Lakers 48 (halftime)
The Hornets blew out the Lakers in the second quarter, 39-20. By the end of the second quarter, the Lakers had trimmed New Orleans' 25-point lead to 19.
Dwight Howard and Metta World Peace both played limited minutes with three fouls apiece. Kobe Bryant scored 17 points in 18 minutes to trim the lead slightly but the Lakers have a sizable deficit to overcome in the second half.
Eric Gordon scored 11 points for the Hornet in the second quarter. Austin Rivers and Al-Farouq Aminu both had 10 for the game as the Hornets shot 56.8% from the field.
The Lakers made only 38.5% of their shots from the field and committed eight turnovers.
The Hornets, who also had eight turnovers, outrebounded the Lakers, 28-15.
Lakers 28, Hornets 28 (end of first quarter)
Both the Lakers and New Orleans Hornets went on runs in the first quarter but when the buzzer sounded, the score was tied.
Kobe Bryant hit back-to-back three-pointers to turn a four-point deficit into a two-point lead. Bryant finished the quarter with eight points as well as four turnovers.
Greivis Vasquez led the Hornets with nine points and four assists. Former Clippers guard Eric Gordon played four minutes before sitting down with two fouls and zero points.
The Lakers shot 56.2% from the field and 66.7% from three-point range. The Hornets shot 54.5% from the field.
The Lakers (30-31) will attempt to climb back to .500 on Wednesday night when they visit the New Orleans Hornets (21-40) on the second night of back-to-back games.
The Hornets are one of the worst teams in the league this season but they're still a threat at home.
For a more in-depth breakdown, check out Preview: Lakers vs. Hornets.
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Email Eric Pincus at firstname.lastname@example.org and follow him on Twitter @EricPincus.