Hornets tie franchise record with 23 3-pointers in win over Timberwolves

Charlotte has now won eight of its last nine matchups and five straight at home

Charlotte Hornets guard Terry Rozier (3) lays the ball up as Minnesota Timberwolves guard D'Angelo Russell (0) watches during the first half of an NBA basketball game in Charlotte, N.C., Friday, Nov. 26, 2021. (AP Photo/Jacob Kupferman)

CHARLOTTE — The continued early-season offensive production from the young Charlotte Hornets is proving to be no fluke.

The Hornets (13-8) picked up their eighth win in nine games with a 133-115 victory over the Timberwolves. Charlotte was led by Kelly Oubre Jr., who tied a career-high seven 3-pointers to provide 27 points off the bench.

Charlotte’s fifth-straight win inside the Spectrum Center snapped Minnesota’s five-game winning streak.

With seven players reaching double digits in the scoring column, the Hornets scored more than half of their season-best 133 points coming on 23 3-pointers, tying the franchise record of long-range shots made in one game.

“We obviously shot the ball very well, but the ball was moving and we were getting shots at three,” Hornets coach James Borrego said. “The unselfish spirit was there and the ball movement was there. This profile has been there for the last 10 games, but tonight it all came together on our home court with everyone making shots.”

The Hornets had a two-point lead over the Timberwolves (9-10) after one quarter but increased it to 68-58 going into halftime, stretching the final lead into an 18-point gap for Charlotte’s largest margin of victory this season.

Miles Bridges posted 18 points and seven rebounds, while Gordon Hayward added 18 points, six rebounds and six assists. LaMelo Ball only made four shots but distributed the ball well with 13 assists and added six rebounds.

“We have so many weapons. We have so many guys who can throw it up,” Hayward said after the game.

While third-year forward P.J. Washington returned to action on Nov. 24 after an extended absence stemming from an elbow injury, Friday night marked his full-scale arrival. Starting in place of center Mason Plumlee (scratched from the lineup due to a calf strain), Washington was 5 for 7 behind the arc and provided 17 points and six rebounds.

Backup power forward Jalen McDaniels once again gave Charlotte valuable action off the bench by notching 14 points and eight rebounds, and Terry Rozier continued his recent hot streak with 15 points on 6-for-10 shooting.

Karl-Anthony Towns scored a team-high 25 points for Minnesota. D’Angelo Russell and Malik Beasley each contributed 18 points.

“These games are great for me as their coach — I get to sit back and watch them play together as everyone who stepped on the floor contributed, played hard and played well,” Borrego said. “We didn’t get our minutes too high, so in a back-to-back that will help us going to Houston tomorrow.”

Charlotte and Houston (2-16) are set for an 8 p.m. Saturday night tipoff in the Toyota Center as the Rockets attempt to win their second consecutive contest after snapping a 15-game losing streak. It will be the first of four in a row on the road for the Hornets.