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Associated Press, Published March 24 2010

NBA: Jackson scores 37, Bobcats rout Wolves 108-95

CHARLOTTE, N.C. – Stephen Jackson shook off a sore hand and busted out of his shooting slump with 37 points, leading the Charlotte Bobcats past Minnesota 108-95 on Wednesday night to send the reeling Timberwolves to their 14th straight loss.

Jackson, who a night earlier revealed he had been plagued by a bruised ligament near his left index finger for the past several weeks, hit 15 of 24 shots after shooting 37 percent in the previous 10 games.

Gerald Wallace added 23 points as the Bobcats shot 54 percent from the field and moved into sixth place in the Eastern Conference with their sixth straight home win.

Unlike a night earlier when the Bobcats needed overtime to beat woeful Washington, the Bobcats made it look easier as they continue an easy portion of their schedule as they try to secure a playoff berth. This began a five-game homestand that includes another matchup against Washington and a game against struggling Philadelphia.

Jackson’s return to form was a good sign for the Bobcats (37-34), who moved into a tie with idle Miami but hold the tiebreaker by taking the season series.

Jackson had gone 10 for 39 from the field in the past two games and was 13 of 53 from 3-point range in the last 10. His left hand was wrapped after the Wizards victory when he said he was in “excruciating pain.”

With his fingers taped, Jackson drilled 4 of 6 3-pointers, including two key buckets near the end of the third quarter to thwart Minnesota’s last rally.

Raymond Felton added 16 points and eight assists as Charlotte held a 44-34 rebounding edge.

Ramon Sessions had 14 points off the bench for Minnesota, which got little from its starting group outside Jefferson. Corey Brewer and Jonny Flynn had eight points apiece on a combined 6 of 17 shooting.

With new owner Michael Jordan not in his courtside seat for only the second home game since he agreed to buy the team, the Bobcats got off to a sluggish start.

Minnesota shredded the league’s top scoring defense in building a 43-34 lead on Wayne Ellington’s 3-pointer with 7:22 left in the second quarter. But then many of the problems that have plagued the Timberwolves this season cropped up.

With Minnesota on a turnover spree and Charlotte scoring at will in transition, the Bobcats went on a 20-0 run over the next six minutes. The last 10 points in the spurt were scored by Wallace thanks to four layups, and the Bobcats took a 55-45 halftime lead.

Jackson hit two 3s in a third quarter after Minnesota got within five points.

The Bobcats were again without center Nazr Mohammed, who has been plagued by a nerve problem in his back. He said after a workout before the game that he could return sometime on the homestand.

NOTES: Bobcats coach Larry Brown on Minnesota C Darko Milicic, whom he buried on the bench as a rookie in Detroit. “He didn’t have a clue. But it didn’t mean he wasn’t talented,” Brown said. “He’s never going to be the second draft pick. That wasn’t fair. But he can be a positive player for any team.” ... C Brian Cardinal was inactive in his first game back with Minnesota. “It’s probably more in the locker room and practice,” coach Kurt Rambis said on why he was re-signed. “He just has a love and enthusiasm for the game and a work ethic that’s unparalleled.” ... Rambis recalled his buzzer-beater to beat Chicago in the Charlotte Hornets’ debut season in 1988. “It just created a buzz around town,” he said. “The attraction started then.”

Minnesota 33 12 31 19 – 95

Charlotte 30 25 30 23 – 108

MINNESOTA (95): Gomes 5-10 1-2 12, Jefferson 9-16 3-6 21, Milicic 4-8 2-3 10, Flynn 2-7 4-5 8, Brewer 4-10 0-0 8, Love 2-6 1-1 5, Ellington 2-8 0-0 6, Wilkins 2-4 4-4 8, Sessions 6-11 2-2 14, Hollins 0-1 0-0 0, Pavlovic 1-1 0-0 3. Totals 37-82 17-23 95.

CHARLOTTE (108): Wallace 9-16 4-7 23, Diaw 3-8 0-0 7, Ratliff 2-5 1-2 5, Felton 8-10 0-0 16, Jackson 15-24 3-4 37, Chandler 2-4 0-0 4, Thomas 3-6 2-2 8, Augustin 1-4 1-1 4, Hughes 2-6 0-0 4, Henderson 0-1 0-0 0, Brown 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 45-84 11-16 108.

3-Point Goals – Minnesota 4-13 (Ellington 2-4, Pavlovic 1-1, Gomes 1-3, Love 0-1, Wilkins 0-1, Brewer 0-3), Charlotte 7-15 (Jackson 4-6, Wallace 1-1, Augustin 1-3, Diaw 1-3, Felton 0-1, Hughes 0-1). Fouled Out – Diaw. Rebounds – Minnesota 43 (Love 9), Charlotte 52 (Chandler 9). Assists – Minnesota 20 (Sessions 5), Charlotte 24 (Felton 8). Total Fouls – Minnesota 19, Charlotte 21. Technicals – Minnesota defensive three second. A – 14,457 (19,077).