Rigby’s Late 3-Pointer Helps Hornets Venom GT Seal 1-1 Split with Heat Check Gaming

Charlotte Backcourt Tallies Four 20-PT Games, PeteBeBallin Double-Doubles Twice vs. Miami

By Sam Perley

Hornets Venom GT kicked off Week 3 of NBA 2K League action with its first loss of the season on Thursday night before bouncing back to beat Heat Check Gaming and move its record to 3-1.

Charlotte got off to a solid start in Game 1 and slid into halftime holding a four-point edge. Heat Check came alive in the second half though and outscored the hosts, 21-13, in the third quarter before opening the fourth on a 9-0 run. Hornets Venom never threatened the outcome from that point on as Miami prevailed, 82-70, for its first regular season win of the campaign.

Guard Justin “Sherm” Sherman (23 points), guard CJ “rigby” Burnett (23) and center Peter “PeteBeBallin” Malin (20 on 10-of-11 shooting) all had 20-point showings in the loss, with Sherm also dishing out nine assists and PeteBeBallin grabbing 14 rebounds. Sten “SAV” Valge-Saar exploded for 40 points and 12 assists to lead Heat Check in the Game 1 triumph.

Looking to then regroup in Game 2, Hornets Venom GT pieced together another sturdy opening three quarters and entered the fourth holding a 10-point lead. Miami rallied to cut the deficit to one possession multiple times over the final six minutes of play, drawing to within two on a dunk by center Juan “Hotshot” Gonzalez at the 43-second mark.

Back at the other end, Sherm calmly drew two Miami defenders into the paint, then hit rigby with a pass just outside the left three-point break. The lefty drained the long triple to put Hornets Venom up by five, a shot soon followed by lock Gio “Trap” Elizondo forcing a SAV turnover to fortify the 73-68 victory.

Rigby (26) and Sherm (25) cracked the 20-point barrier for the second consecutive outing, with the former also tallying another nine assists in the winning effort. PeteBeBallin (17 points on 8-of-8 shooting and 13 rebounds) double-doubled again and forward Kingsley “Crown” Braggs chipped in two points, six rebounds, three assists, two steals and two blocks. Hotshot led Heat Check with 36 points and 11 rebounds and SAV added 12 points, 16 assists and five turnovers.

Charlotte committed just six turnovers in Game 2 after coughing it up nine times in Game 1, while also connecting on 22-of-43 total three-point attempts on the night (51%). Miami had just four giveaways and went 10-of-18 from deep in Game 1 (56%), before those numbers fell to seven and 6-of-19 in the ensuing showdown (32%).

Hornets Venom GT will now close out the week with two road contests against Raptors Uprising GC on Saturday, June 5 starting at 9 PM EST. Catch the action on the NBA 2K League’s Twitch and YouTube channels.