CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) — Kyrie Irving hit nine 3-pointers and scored a season-high 50 points, and the Brooklyn Nets snapped a four-game skid with a 132-121 win over the Charlotte Hornets on Tuesday evening.
Irving became one of 22 players in NBA history with five 50-point games, according to Basketball Reference. His career high was 57 points on March 12, 2015, when he was with the Cleveland Cavaliers in an overtime win over San Antonio.
Andre Drummond dominated inside, finishing with 20 points and 14 rebounds for Brooklyn, which fell to .500 this season and became the only eighth in the Eastern Conference standings, breaking a tie with the Hornets. .
Miles Bridges and Terry Rozier each finished with 30 points for Charlotte, whose two-game winning streak was snapped. LaMelo Ball added 24 points and seven assists.
Kevin Durant had a quiet night by his high standards, finishing with 14 points.
But he didn’t have to do much lifting with Irving taking control of most of the game. Irving was 15 of 19 from the field and 9 of 12 from beyond the arc. He was also 11 of 13 from the line.
The Nets took a 69-43 lead behind Irving’s 20 points in the first half and a dominant inside performance from Drummond, who had 13 points and six boards at the break. The Hornets didn’t help themselves, repeatedly committing turnovers with lazy passes, including two by Ball on back-to-back possessions.
Brooklyn led by 34 points in the second half before the Hornets cut the lead to 13 with less than four minutes left in the game. But Irving, as he had done throughout the second half, knocked down a jumper to thwart the rally.
Nets: Kevin Durant was given a technical foul in the third quarter for pushing Terry Rozier as he tried to break free for an inbounds pass. … Seth Curry picked up a technique for arguing an appeal.
Hornets: Jalen McDaniels, who has been out since Jan. 21 with an ankle injury, has returned to action. He played nine minutes and had two points. … Montrezl Harrell was given a technical foul when he shoved Nic Claxton.
Nets: At the Philadelphia 76ers on Thursday night.
Hornets: Host the Boston Celtics on Wednesday night.
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