NEW ORLEANS — Anthony Davis lifted off the ground, just high enough for Greivis Vasquez to spot him behind two San Antonio defenders.
The rookie forward caught Vasquez’s lob and completed the alley-oop, sending the thousands at the New Orleans Arena into delirium.
Davis landed and arched his body back, letting out a yell and emotion that said all you needed to know about Monday night’s game.
Hornets 95. Spurs 88.
And for the first time this season, New Orleans played a nearly complete game.
“I think we’re just playing and playing hard,” said Davis, who finished with 17 points, nine rebounds and three steals. “I just tried to be aggressive. Coach Monty (Williams) just wanted me to play with a lot of energy and I tried to do that from the start of the ballgame. To beat a championship-caliber team is big for us. I’m really proud of our team.”
New Orleans (9-25) snapped a six-game losing streak to San Antonio, which lost for the second time in three games.
The Hornets won in nearly every category Monday night. New Orleans forced 19 San Antonio (27-10) turnovers, including 12 steals, and made them count, getting 23 points off the mistakes.
New Orleans outscored the Spurs 46-34 in the paint and had a 20-10 advantage in second-chance points.
San Antonio shot 45.2 percent, but future Hall of Famer Tim Duncan had just 13 points on 5 of 14 shooting.
“We played a well-coached, aggressive, well-executing team,” Spurs coach Gregg Popovich said. “They did a great job at both ends of the court. They just whipped us.”
This after the Hornets beat Dallas in overtime on Saturday night.
Against San Antonio, guard Eric Gordon continued his onslaught when on the floor. Though he shot poorly – finishing just 9 of 22 – he hit three straight long jumpers after the Spurs had cut New Orleans’ lead to 78-75 in the fourth quarter.
The Hornets ran off a 12-4 run and never led by fewer than seven points after Gordon’s three shots.
Vasquez had 14 points and 11 assists while Ryan Anderson had 13 points off the bench for New Orleans.