Rob Gray had 46 points, the third-best scoring output in franchise history, leading the Mad Ants to a 127-123 victory over the Eastern Conference-leading Lakeland Magic in front of 738 fans at RP Funding Center in Lakeland, Florida, tonight.
Gray, a rookie, was 12 of 24 from the field, including 18-of-19 shooting from the free-throw line and a 4-of-6 night from beyond the arc, eclipsing his previous career best by 11 points.
He neared the franchise’s single-game scoring record of 49 points, set by Tony Mitchell in 2012-13. Mitchell also scored 47 points in a game that season.
Earl Calloway scored 44 points in 2007-08.
The Mad Ants needed Gray to step up after a tumultuous several days that saw them waive guard Tra-Deon Hollins on Feb. 6 and the G League suspend guard Je’lon Hornbeak five games Tuesday for violation of the anti-drug policy.
Ike Nwamu, who started at guard alongside Gray, had 18 points and they combined for five assists and two turnovers.
Indiana Pacers rookie Alize Johnson had his 20th double-double in 25 games, totaling 23 points and 18 rebounds for the Mad Ants (19-17), who had lost their previous two games and will not play again until after the NBA all-star break – next Wednesday at Delaware.
Stephan Hicks had 16 points for Fort Wayne, which was without Davon Reed, who had been called back to the Pacers.
Lakeland (24-13) was paced by Amile Jefferson’s 25 points and nine rebounds. Troy Coupain had 22 points and nine rebounds. Gabe York added 20 points.