Eyeing their fourth-straight win, the New York Knicks visited the Charlotte Hornets, but couldn't overcome the absence of Carmelo Anthony in a low-scoring 76-71 contest.
The Hornets were without Kemba Walker, whose spot in the starting lineup was filled by Brian Roberts. Roberts had a team-high 17 points, shooting 5-of-9 from the floor, including the go-ahead bucket in the final few minutes to lead Charlotte to the win.
Gerald Henderson and Michael Kidd-Gilchrist also scored in double figures with 14 and 10 respectively, but shot a combined 7-of-22, while Al Jefferson went 4-of-14 for nine. He also had seven blocks.
Tim Hardaway Jr. scored 25 in the win, filling in for Anthony as the team's go-to scorer. However, he couldn't lead a team that featured three 10-day contract players in the starting lineup to a win. Two of those guys, Lance Thomas (16) and Langston Galloway (11) scored in double figures—the only other Knicks to do so.
Neither team shot well throughout the game, with Charlotte notching a sub-20 percent clip halfway through the second quarter. They eventually turned it around and finished the game at 33 percent. New York went 35 percent on the night from the floor.
In the end, though, it was foul shooting (Charlotte went 24-of-37 from the line) and New York turnovers—they finished with 18 including a few critical ones in the closing minutes—that gave the Hornets the win.
With a Brooklyn Nets loss thrusting them into their conference's top eight, the Hornets will travel to San Antonio on Wednesday. New York, getting much less rest, will take on the Sacramento Kings on Monday as they look to bounce back.