After losing their first three games in Las Vegas and earning the 23rd seed in the tournament phase of the NBA Summer League, the Charlotte Hornets have rattled off two impressive victories on consecutive days in the desert.
Led by the hot hand of rookie shooting guard P.J. Hairston, Charlotte dismantled the New Orleans Pelicans 104-75 to advance to the quarterfinals where they will face the second seeded New York Knicks on Saturday, July 19.
Hairston, the 26th pick in the 2014 draft led all scorers with 21 points (4-of-9 from three), three assists and two steals in 29 minutes of play. It is Hairston’s fourth-consecutive game scoring in double figures.
"We are just trying to get better each time out and make the right plays on the floor," Hairston said "we struggled with that in our first three games but coach (Patrick Ewing) has got us playing to our strengths and it has shown in the two wins".
As a team the Hornets were red hot from beyond the arc knocking down 12 of 20 from long range while shooting 50% from the field overall in the win over New Orleans. Charlotte also outrebounded the Pelicans 38 to 26 while forcing 19 turnovers, a recipe for victory on any day.
Hairston was also joined in double-figures by five of his Hornet teammates, most notably 16 points apiece from second year big man Cody Zeller and rookie Rion Brown from Miami. Charlotte also got 11 assists from point guard Mickey McConnell, Hairston's teammate with the Texas Legends of the D-League last season.