Dwight Howard’s Double-Double Energizes Lakers Past Hornets
Dwight Howard 5
Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

The Los Angeles Lakers defeated the Charlotte Hornets in their second home game of the 2019-20 NBA season.

The Lakers got off to a slow start as they failed to convert on some easy buckets while the Hornets managed to knock down jumpers that gave them the early lead.

Cody Zeller was a problem as he was able to take advantage of JaVale McGee‘s reluctance to come out of the paint and hit a couple of shots from the perimeter.

After a timeout, Anthony Davis got them back into the game after going on a quick 6-0 run on his own. After a brief Hornets run, Davis and the Lakers tightened up their play on both ends and went into the second quarter with a slim two-point lead.

Los Angeles opened up the period with much more energy as they remained active on defense and looked to push more in transition. The Lakers bench came alive, as Kentavious Caldwell-Pope finally converted his first field goal of the season while Dwight Howard scored on some easy lobs and cleaned up the glass.

With LeBron James and Davis sitting on the bench, Charlotte clawed back in the game, forcing head coach Frank Vogel to re-insert his two All-Star players.

However, the Hornets gummed up the paint and forced some turnovers that gave them momentum, leaving the Lakers only up by one at the end of the first half.

Los Angeles opened up the second half too relaxed on the defensive end as they allowed Charlotte several open looks from downtown, but they were fortunately unable to capitalize on most of them. The Lakers had trouble separating themselves from their opponent as they continued to cough up the ball, allowing the Hornets to earn some easy points.

Both teams struggled as the quarter progressed as neither team could seem to find much rhythm from the field. However, the bigs for the purple and gold sparked a late run as Davis made his presence felt on defense while Howard followed up with a couple of buckets at the rim. They would head into the final quarter up seven.

Alex Caruso re-energized the Lakers as he poked the ball away and ran it down for a dunk.

The play triggered a series of spectacular defensive plays, including some highlight-reel blocks from Howard.

James also got going as he bullied the Hornets on the way to the basket and capped it off with a three that put them up 19.

The game was essentially decided at that point as the Hornets simply could not keep up with a rolling Lakers team.

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