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Prior to their game with the Memphis Grizzlies, it was brought to players’ attention by Steve Clifford, that the team has played poorly in the 2nd game of back-to-backs. The Bobcats had lost 8 of their last 9 on the 2nd night of back-to-backs, and Kemba Walker and company was on a mission to change this trend. The team was riding a 3-game winning streak and would have a hard time increasing it to 4, as Zach Randolph and the Memphis Grizzlies were paying a visit to Time Warner Cable Arena. Could the Bobcats get into the win column for the 4th consecutive time? Lets see.
After winning the 1st quarter by a score of 28-21, the Bobcats hit a dry spell on the offensive end, and could only muster up 14 points in the 2nd quarter. The Bobcats went into halftime down by 6 points, as Memphis lead 48-42.
The 3rd quarter saw Kemba leading the charge with 8 points. Josh McRoberts did a good job of making decisions with the basketball in that particular quarter, like he has all year. He made a lot of plays in this game that are not going to make it into your local newspapers box score, but they were important plays that put the Bobcats in position to have a solid 4th quarter. The Cats won the 3rd quarter by a score of 15-22.
The 4th quarter is where the role players really became a factor in this game. Let’s start with Bismack Biyombo, who gets the assignment of guarding Marc Gasol, which is not easy at all. The native of the Congo was up for the challenge, and he made some impact plays when matched up with the reigning defensive player of the year. Biz contested shots, rebounded, and even managed to block Gasol, which gave the raucous crowd of 18,317 lots to cheer about, and had the bench going crazy. Biyombo only played 17 minutes, but they were impactful ones, and he made his presence more than felt.
The other bench player who made his presence felt was Anthony Tolliver. The alum of Creighton came in, guns blazing, as he hit all 3 of his three-pointers in the 4th quarter. He was more than reliable. He was, how the kids say these days, "WET". Anthony Tolliver proved to be a huge X-Factor in this game and along with his 3 three-pointers came a charge, which he drew after the barrage of long-range jumpers.
Memphis stayed close the entire way but Kemba Walker was just too much. They didn't know what to do with him. He was just having one of those nights that have all of us Bobcats/Hornets fans believing more and more that he IS an All-Star. He was unstoppable off the dribble, finishing with contact, and at the free throw line, where he went a perfect 10 for 10. After dodging a few bullets from Mike Conley on the last possession the Bobcats arose victorious for their 4th straight win in a 92-89 victory over Memphis.
Kemba Walker finished with 31 points, 8 rebounds and 5 assists. It was a great night for the Bobcats who earned a hard fought victory and are going into the hardest stretch of their schedule playing their best basketball. He's finally healthy and Kemba Walker and friends are officially in "Kill Mode" as they tackle the NBA's elites within these next 4 games.