PHILADELPHIA -- David West decided it was his turn to lead New Orleans.
He's playing his best basketball of the season, and, not coincidentally, so are the Hornets.
West scored 30 points with 10 rebounds to lead the Hornets to their season-high fifth straight win, 98-91 over the Philadelphia 76ers on Monday night.
"I've just been trying to go out and make the initiative," he said. "I feel like if I play well, it gives us a better chance to win games."
West was chosen the Western Conference player of the week only hours earlier on the strength of his 28.5 points and 10.5 rebounds in four Hornets' victories. The new week brought more of the same stellar production. West scored the Hornets' first 12 points as they raced to a 13-point lead.
Chris Paul bounced back from a two-point first half to finish with 16 points and 12 assists. His 3-pointer with 70 seconds left made it 95-89 and the Sixers could not recover.
Led by West, the Hornets won for the seventh time in nine games since the All-Star break.
"We really haven't played our best basketball in the last five games, but we just keep finding ways to win games," coach Byron Scott said. "I think we have some confidence in ourselves that when the game is on the line, we are able to get things done to win the game."
West has 30-plus points and 10-plus rebounds in three of the last four games and is averaging a cool 30.0 points in the last four games.
The Sixers lost for the sixth time in eight games since the All-Star break and continue to slide down the Eastern Conference standings. Their 14-4 run last month had them in the hunt for the fourth seed and now they're closer to eighth.
"We are going to work on the little things that will put us up," Sixers coach Tony DiLeo said.
Iguodala swished a 20-footer to bring Philadelphia within one early in the fourth period. Paul assisted on two straight baskets for some breathing room and West made a short jumper to give him 30 points and New Orleans an 84-75 lead.
Rasual Butler, who had 16 points and 10 rebounds, hit the Hornets' eighth 3 of the game and they were back ahead by double digits.
The Sixers don't play again until Saturday and need the break to figure out how to start winning again. But they did have some fight in them, coming back from 13 down to tie the score at 25 in the second quarter.
"The main thing we need to do is take focus," Iguodala said. "It'll be a couple of days before we have a game, so we mainly just need to get ourselves ready and prepare for the next game. We've been having tough losses, and I think we've had a learning experience in those close losses."
They could have done more to stop West.
West, who scored 32 points in Sunday's win at New Jersey, shouldered the offensive load early when he made six of his first seven shots. When he scored his ninth basket midway through the second quarter, a Sixers fan yelled out: "Will you double-team him, please?!" He scored 22 points in the half to help New Orleans lead 46-45 at halftime.
"With Paul penetrating and probing, we've got guys who can make shots," West said. "That's what's been happening."
New Orleans outrebounded Philadelphia 50-39. ... The Hornets are on their longest winning streak since March 30-April 12 of last season. ... The Sixers are 11-11 against the West.