NEW ORLEANS (AP) – As a contested layup by Pelicans guard Ian Clark caromed off the rim, Julius Randle barreled into the paint, grabbed the offensive rebound and quickly fired it to the perimeter, where Darius Miller caught it in rhythm and nailed a 3-pointer.
It was the kind of effective hustle play that Randle has been providing in bunches lately, just as the Pelicans hoped he would when they acquired him to help fill the void left by DeMarcus Cousins’ departure in free agency.
Anthony Davis had 29 points and nine rebounds, Randle added 21 points, 14 rebounds and 10 assists in 25 minutes, and New Orleans won its third straight with a 140-126 victory over the San Antonio Spurs on Monday night.
“I was just being aggressive. I was just playing hard. If I make mistakes, I don’t really care. I just play through them,” Randle said. “When I play with that mindset, without thinking about anything else, I’m successful.”
“He’s been doing everything,” Holiday said.
E’Twaun Moore scored 24 points and Holiday 21 for New Orleans, which shot nearly 58 percent (59 of 102). Nikola Mirotic hit three of four 3-point attempts and finished with 13 points, while second-year pro Frank Jackson, who because of injury did not make his debut until this season, scored 12 points.
DeMar DeRozan scored 21 points and Bryn Forbes added 20 for the Spurs, who defeated Golden State a night earlier but have now lost four of five. Dante Cunningham hit all five 3s he attempted and scored 19 points, but did not score in the second half. Rudy Gay added 17 points.
Meantime, the NBA’s new scoring leader was determined his latest big night wouldn’t go to waste.
Kemba Walker scored 43 points, giving him 103 in his last two games, and the Charlotte Hornets battled back to beat the Boston Celtics 117-112 on Monday night.
Walker followed up his NBA season-best, 60-point effort in an overtime loss to the 76ers on Saturday night with another spectacular performance. He scored 21 points in the fourth quarter and made 14 of 25 shots overall, including seven more 3-pointers.
He finished 7 of 10 from the floor with four 3-pointers in the fourth quarter as Charlotte erased a 10-point deficit to pull even at 8-8 on the season.