PHILADELPHIA (AP) — Lou Williams scored 17 points and Jrue Holiday had 15 to help the Philadelphia 76ers beat the Charlotte Bobcats 89-72 on Friday night.
Jodie Meeks scored 14 points for the Sixers, who bounced back from a rare home loss and still haven’t lost two straight games all season.
The Sixers won in front of co-owners Will Smith and his wife, Jada Pinkett Smith. The Hollywood power couple had a front-row seat for their first Sixers game of the season. Their son, Jaden, also watched the Sixers romp. Fans rhythmically chanted “We’ve got Will Smith! and the actor with the megawatt smile pointed toward them in appreciation.
The Bobcats scored only 10 points in the first quarter and lost their seventh straight game. Kemba Walker scored 14 points.
The Sixers improved to 9-2 at home.
While fans in Los Angeles and New York are accustomed to the A-list celebrity courtside sightings, Smith’s presence was a big deal in the locker room.
Holiday, a California native who played at UCLA, suggested he could become Smith’s latest sidekick, in a lineage that includes D.J. Jazzy Jeff and Carlton.
“We have the Fresh Prince of Bel-Air and the Fresh Prince of Hollywood,” he said, smiling. “We can team up. That would be awesome.”
Evan Turner and Holiday discussed which Sixer could dance the best Carlton, a move made popular in Smith’s TV show, “The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air.” Both agreed it would be forward Lavoy Allen. Turner met Smith once before in California and hoped he would visit the locker room after the game.
“Who doesn’t like Will Smith? He’s one of the best actors of all time,” Turner said. “That would definitely be dope.”
Holiday scored seven points in the first to get them off and running and stretch the lead to as many as 26 in the first half. Led by Williams’ 10 points in the second quarter, the Sixers made 13 of 20 shots and continued to rough up the worst teams in the East to pad their solid record.
At one point in the first half, Williams had 12 points off the bench — the same total as Charlotte’s starting five.
Next week can start to prove if the Sixers are a legitiatate strong team in the East or one that has benefitted from playing the Wizards three times. Orlando, Chicago and Miami all play at the Wells Fargo Center.
There was no suspense in this one. Bobcats coach Paul Silas was hit for two quick technicals and was ejected with 4:38 left in the second quarter. He wasn’t there to watch the Bobcats miss 13 of 19 shots in the third.
Early in the game, Walker tried to save a ball from going out of bounds and threw it into the bottom of the backboard.
The Sixers did their best to make Smith, a Philadelphia native, feel at home. There was the “Carlton Cam” and “Get Jiggy With it” cam for fans to dance along with and stay entertained during the rout.
Like Silas, the Smith family had seen enough and skipped out on the second half.
Notes: The 76ers signed center Francisco Elson. This is Elson’s second stint with the Sixers. … The Sixers gave away Holiday bobbleheads. “I look 50,” he said.