• 48°

Covington, hot-shooting 76ers rout Hornets

Hornets suffer home loss to Philadelphia

Philadelphia 76ers’ JJ Redick (17) gestures toward a fan after making a basket at the end of the first quarter against the Charlotte Hornets in an NBA basketball game in Charlotte, N.C., Tuesday, March 6, 2018. (AP Photo/Chuck Burton)

By Steve Reed

AP Sports Writer

CHARLOTTE (AP) — The Philadelphia 76ers are pretty tough inside when center Joel Embiid is on the court.

Now if the young 76ers can move the ball and hit 3-point shots like they did Tuesday night, they may prove to be a tough out in the Eastern Conference playoffs.

The 76ers had 35 assists and hit 16-of-33 shots from beyond the arc in an easy 128-114 win over the Charlotte Hornets.

Robert Covington led the way with 22 points on five 3-pointers, while rookie sensation Ben Simmons chipped in with 16 points, 13 assists and eight rebounds. Dario Saric had 19 points and Embiid added 18 as part of a balanced scoring attack.

“We have to make 3s,” 76ers coach Brett Brown said. “Joel draws a crowd and gets a lot of attention. When Cov is scoring it does help, but what really helps is being able to punish the double-teams on Joel with a sort of a lethal 3-point line attack. It stings. It’s deflating when you play kick out, 3-ball, 3-ball, 3-ball.”

The 76ers shot 57.5 percent from field.

Covington was 7 of 11 from the field and 5 of 9 from 3-point range. He said he knows when he’s knocking down shots it changes everything for his team.

“It opens the floor a whole lot,” Covington said. “It gives Joel a lot more room to play, Ben slashes and Dario gets wide-open looks.”

Dwight Howard had a season-high 30 points and grabbed six rebounds, while Nic Batum had 12 points and 10 assists for Charlotte, which fell seven games out of the final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference with 17 games remaining.

Embiid dominated Howard in Friday’s 110-99 win in Philadelphia with 23 points and 15 rebounds to Howard’s six points and six rebounds. Howard was much better this time around, but he didn’t get much help from this teammates. Charlotte’s other starters were a combined 9 of 26 from the field.

It didn’t help the Hornets that top defender Michael Kidd-Gilchrist was ejected in the second quarter after picking up a second technical foul for disputing a non-call on a drive to the basket.

Simmons only took nine shots against the Hornets, but made eight of them. When he wasn’t scoring at will, he was finding open teammates for open baskets.


76ers: Outrebounded the Hornets 44-33. … Had 35 assists to Charlotte’s 26.

Hornets: Howard picked up his 14th technical foul of the season for arguing a call. … Howard made a 3-pointer to beat the buzzer at halftime and celebrated by blowing a kiss to the crowd.


Kemba Walker might be starting to show signs of fatigue after carrying this team all season. The All-Star point guard was 1 of 9 from the field and was held to a season-low five points.

“Listen, he’s not a machine,” Hornets coach Steve Clifford said. “I mean he’s a human being and he’s played at such an incredibly high level all year that, you’re going to have games now and then where you’re not. Sooner or later you’re not going to get 27 every night, you’re just not.”


Hornets rookie Malik Monk saw some playing time at point guard with Michael Carter-Williams out with a shoulder injury. He was 3 of 10 from the field and had nine points and two assists.

“I thought he did a good job,” Clifford said. “We were organized when he was on the floor and we’ll watch the film and we’ll take things that he can learn from and grow.”


Make no doubt it, Luke Kuechly is still king in Charlotte. The crowd erupted into a loud chorus of “Luuuuuuke” after the beloved Panthers perennial All-Pro linebacker was shown sitting courtside on the big screen.


76ers: Visit Miami on Thursday night.

Hornets: Host Nets on Thursday night.


More AP NBA: https://apnews.com/tag/NBAbasketball



Man charged after thieves rob would-be gun buyers of wallets, shoes


Blotter: Four added to sheriff’s most wanted list

High School

High school football: Some anxious moments, but Hornets win state title


Photos: Salisbury High Hornets win big in 2AA championship game


County manager outlines projections for the upcoming fiscal year budget, suggests uses for stimulus money


Miami-based Browns Athletic Apparel opens second screen printing location in Salisbury


At funeral, fallen Watauga deputies remembered as ‘heroes’


COVID-19 cluster identified at Granite Quarry Elementary


More than half of North Carolinians have now taken at least one vaccine shot


City hopes to cover expenses in 2021-22 budget with surplus revenue generated this year


Fallen tree proves to be a blessing for local nonprofit Happy Roots


Quotes of the week


Health department drops quarantine time from 14 to 10 days


Blotter: More than $100,000 in property reported stolen from Old Beatty Ford Road site


City fights invasive beetles by injecting trees with insecticide


City names downtown recipients for federal Parks Service grant

China Grove

China Grove Town Council weighs 2021-22 budget priorities, supports buying body cameras


Educators reflect on Teacher Appreciation Week


Livingstone College wins $30,000 Home Depot grant




Shield-A-Badge With Prayer program enters 26th year, accepting volunteers to pair with officers


COVID-19 infection, quarantine numbers in Rowan-Salisbury Schools reach new highs

High School

High school football: Offensive line came together for Hornets, who play for state title tonight


Pro baseball: White makes pro debut and says, ‘It felt amazing to be out there’