D.J. Augustin scored 31 points and had eight rebounds as the Charlotte Bobcats edged the Philadelphia 76ers 100-97 on Thursday. Augustin shot 11-17 from the floor and 6-6 from the line in one of the best performances of his nascent NBA career. With the win, Charlotte took a slight lead over the Sixers and Pacers for the No. 7 spot in the East.
The game wasn't exactly the defensive struggle you'd expect. The Bobcats shot 48 percent and the teams combined for just 17 turnovers. Philly didn't hit as many shots; the Sixers' own young point guard, Jrue Holiday, hit just six of his 17 shots for 13 points.
Would you believe we nearly had another four-point play in crunch time? Late, with the Bobcats up three, Gerald Henderson fouled Andre Iguodala on a three-point attempt. Iguodala's shot missed, and the star wing hit just two of the three from the line, preserving a Charlotte lead and stemming, for now, the nation's four-pointer outbreak. (The Magic hit two of them on Wednesday en route to a win.)
This win was quite big for the Bobcats in terms of the tight and slightly depressing playoff race in the East, as Tyrus Thomas will be out eight weeks to recover from knee surgery. Charlotte needs to count every win a blessing, as Thomas has been Charlotte's best player, even in a bench role.