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Nets Lose Late Lead to Hornets

The Nets blew an 11-point lead with 4 1/2 minutes to go at the IZOD Center Monday night, and a Chris Paul layup with two seconds to go gave the Hornets a two-point win. New Orleans led by 12 at halftime behind hot shooting from Peja Stojakovic, but the Nets got back in it quickly, closing to within five early in the third and taking the lead by the end of the period. A 12-3 run took their lead to 11 with 4:52 to go on the clock, but then the Hornets went on a 14-3 run (which included two four-point plays) of their own, tying the game at 82 with a minute on the clock. On the next Nets possession, Nenad Krstic got fouled but missed both free throws, and after Jason Kidd got the offensive rebound, Krstic missed a jumper, setting up the Hornets with one final possession for the game. Paul then used a screen to get a lane to the hoop and hit a tough runner with 2.6 on the clock to take the lead. After a pair of timeouts, Antoine Wright's turnaround from the top of the key fell short at the buzzer. Richard Jefferson led all scorers with 32 points, but was scoreless in the fourth. Krstic recorded his first double-double of the season, Jason Kidd finished one board short of a triple-double and Sean Williams got significant playing time for the first time, scoring six points, grabbing eight boards and blocking four shots in 19 minutes.