NEW ORLEANS — Rajon Rondo set a franchise record with a career-high 25 assists in just 30 minutes on the court, Anthony Davis had 33 points, 11 rebounds and six blocks, and the New Orleans Pelicans beat the Brooklyn Nets 128-113 on Wednesday night.
DeMarcus Cousins had 27 points and 14 rebounds, and Jrue Holiday scored 23 points for the Pelicans, who’ve won three straight.
Currently sitting on the edge of the Western Conference playoff picture, the Pelicans entered their current three-game homestand looking to string together some victories against teams that have struggled on the road.
They got off to a solid start against Brooklyn, leading by as many as 16 in the first quarter, 23 in the second and 33 in the third.
Nets forward DeMarre Carroll (9) drives past Pelicans guard Rajon Rondo.
At that point, Pelicans coach Alvin Gentry pulled the starters, only to have to put them back in following a 17-0 Nets run that trimmed New Orleans’ lead to 91-75 heading into the fourth quarter.
Caris LeVert scored 22 points, Nik Stauskas added 21, and both were instrumental in Brooklyn’s brief surge. But the Pelicans’ lineup of Davis, Cousins, Holiday, Rondo and E’Twaun Moore, who had 20 points, quickly created more separation again and set New Orleans up for a stress-free finish.
The only drama in the latter stages of the fourth quarter was whether Rondo would eclipse franchise and career marks for assists. He broke Chris Paul’s mark with his 22nd assist and set a new personal best with his 25th, then came to the bench to a standing ovation and a congratulatory handshake from Gentry.