The Hornets and Raptors face off for a two game set, both in Toronto. The Raptors are 1-2 so far through a six game homestand.
Hornets scope (11-30, 14th in East | Offensive rating: 30th | Defensive rating: 26th)
This is a lost year for Charlotte following a terrible offseason and LaMelo Ball missing 24 games with ankle injuries. He just had a career best 14 game stretch of scoring at least 20 points snapped on Sunday at Indiana. Ball is averaging 23.1 points and 8.3 assists in his third season, both career highs. Charlotte is the only team worse at three point percentage than Toronto (32.5%).
Raptors scope (17-23, 11th in East | Offensive rating: 16th | Defensive rating: 14th)
Toronto has a chance to win three games in a row for the first time this season if business is taken care of with this two game set. The midway mark of the season approaches with the Raptors sitting a game and a half behind the Bulls for the final play-in spot. Chicago has been playing much better lately but DeMar DeRozan suffered a quad injury against Boston yesterday.
The Raptors starting line-up has been intact for a few games now, combining for 96 points in the win against Portland on Sunday. The bench added 21, their highest output without Gary Trent Jr. since December 19th against the Sixers.
Meanwhile, Christian Koloko hasn’t been hazed much as a rookie to my knowledge. A funny moment concluded practice yesterday.
Tip-Off: 7:30pm EST | TV: TSN 1/4/5/4K | Radio: Sportsnet 590
Gordon Hayward (hamstring) is doubtful. Kelly Oubre Jr. (hand) is out 4-6 weeks after surgery on a torn ligament.
PG: LaMelo Ball, Dennis Smith Jr, Theo Maledon
SG: Terry Rozier, James Bouknight, Bryce McGowens
SF: Jalen McDaniels, Cody Martin
PF: P.J. Washington, JT Thor, Kai Jones
C: Mason Plumlee, Mark Williams, Nick Richards
Otto Porter Jr. (toe) is still out for the foreseeable future.
PG: Fred VanVleet, Malachi Flynn, Jeff Dowtin Jr.
SG: Gary Trent Jr.
SF: O.G. Anunoby, Juancho Hernangomez
PF: Scottie Barnes, Chris Boucher, Thaddeus Young
C: Pascal Siakam, Precious Achiuwa, Christian Koloko
The Raptors are favoured by 7.5 points. Over/Under is awfully high at 230.5. Charlotte gives up 118.1 points a game (3rd worst in NBA) but I would take the under.