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Wednesday, Feb. 10, 2010

Carter pumps in 48 as Magic drop Hornets

ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) The high-flying layups. The fall-away jumpers. The step-back 3-pointers.

Vinsanity was back.

Vince Carter had a season-high 48 points, leading the Orlando Magic back from a 17-point second-half deficit to beat the New Orleans Hornets 123-117 on Monday night.

After one of the most sensational games in his storied career, all Carter could do was shake his head and smile.

"Been a while," he said.

Shooting just 28 percent in January and being booed on his home floor suddenly seems like a distant memory since the calendar flipped. The kid from nearby Daytona Beach had his adopted hometown fans with their jaws dropped like never before in a Magic uniform.

"It's a new month. A new month brings new things. The past is the past, and it's going to be that," Carter said. "I've had rough months. That's just how it goes. And I know the expectations, and you work so hard to have an impressive resume, so it's expected each and every night. I understand that, and I don't have a problem with that.

"I don't mind being booed because I know what I can do. So I was just going to continue to play and shine through."

He do so in thrilling fashion.

Carter was 19 for 27 shooting and had 34 points in the second half with some of the most sizzling moves since he joined the Magic, who have won nine of their last 11 games. He added seven rebounds, two assists and a stockpile of highlights to his already illustrious career.

"I've never see anybody do that on my team," point guard Jameer Nelson said. "I called his number like six times in a row, and he made it six times in a row."

Peja Stojakovic had 29 points, and Darren Collison and David West added 27 points apiece for the Hornets, who have lost four of five since Chris Paul went down with an injured left knee.

But there was no stopping Carter.

It was the most points by a Magic player since Tracy McGrady — Carter's cousin — had 62 points against Washington on March 10, 2004.

"He was unbelievable," Stojakovic said. "He made some really tough shots over two guys or three guys."

Lakers 101, Spurs 89

In Los Angeles, Pau Gasol had 21 points and 19 rebounds to lead five players in double figures, and the Lakers beat San Antonio without injured Kobe Bryant and Andrew Bynum.

Manu Ginobili scored 21 points for the Spurs.

Mavericks 127, Warriors 117

In Oakland, Calif., Jason Terry scored a season-high 36 points, including the go-ahead 3-pointer, and the Mavericks rallied from a 14-point deficit to beat the Warriors.

Anthony Morrow scored a season-high 33 points and had 11 rebounds to lead Golden State, which lost its season-worst ninth straight, including five in a row at home.

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