Marvin Williams scored seven fourth-quarter points, and six Hornets finished in double figures as Charlotte defeated Utah 99-88 despite another big outing from Jazz rookie Donovan Mitchell on Friday night at Spectrum Center in Charlotte, N.C.
Kemba Walker posted 15 of his 22 points in the first half, finishing 5-for-14 from the field for the Hornets. Williams had 15 points, Michael Kidd-Gilchrist added 12 and Nic Batum scored 11.
Frank Kaminsky and Jeremy Lamb scored 16 and 11 points, respectively, off the Charlotte bench. Dwight Howard added eight points and 13 rebounds.
The Hornets needed the group effort to offset Mitchell’s 35 points. Mitchell scored 22 points on 7-for-12 shooting in the first half, providing the team’s final 12 points before the break. Mitchell finished 10-for-20, but he missed his final three shots.
Walker made his first four shots from the field, all 3-pointers. He missed his next six shots from the floor.
Williams scored five points in a 52-second span in the fourth quarter.
After Mitchell’s 30-footer tied the game at 85 with 5:58 remaining, the Jazz went almost three minutes without scoring.
Utah’s Rodney Hood, in his first game since an ejection Wednesday night at Washington, supplied 15 points and Royce O‘Neale posted 11 points and 10 rebounds for the Jazz.
Utah missed an opportunity to wrap up a four-game road trip with back-to-back victories.
Derrick Favors returned to the Jazz starting lineup after missing a game two nights earlier because of an ankle sprain. He scored five points in 29 minutes.
The teams were knotted at 25 after the first quarter, when the Jazz shot 5-for-9 on 3-pointers and 4-for-12 on 2-point attempts.
The Hornets went up 52-46 at halftime, with Kaminsky’s 3-pointer in the final minute helping to extend the lead.
The Jazz never led in the second half until the final two minutes of the third quarter, and that didn’t last long.
Earlier Friday, Hornets coach Steve Clifford was back at the arena after being cleared to return to coaching on a full-time basis following a medical-related absence that lasted for more than a month. He will be back to practice Tuesday and on the bench Wednesday. Associate coach Stephen Silas has been the acting coach in Clifford’s absence.
--Field Level Media