Where: Time Warner Cable Arena
When: 2 p.m.
TV/Radio: Fox Sports Southeast, WFNZ 610 AM
After Fridays disappointing loss to the Cleveland Cavaliers the Charlotte Hornets are looking for a victory over the struggling Milwaukee Bucks.
When I say struggling I mean struggling. The Bucks were last year's Eastern Conference darling with many lengthy players who could switch on defense and just create havoc for other teams. This year the Bucks so far are ranked 30th in defensive rating. The teams offense has improved, but it doesn't mean much when teams drop 113 points on you. The Eastern Conference is improved this year and the Bucks won't make the playoffs if they don't right the defensive ship.
They've added Greg Monroe to play center, and he's putting up his usual numbers. Giannis Antetokounmpo is averaging 17.7 points per game and still looks like he could play five positions if he wanted to, and Khris Middleton is hitting his strive after receiving his new contract in the offseason. Michael Carter-Williams still doesn't look like a surefire starting point guard; his lack of shooting bogs down the spacing for a team that doesn't really have a lot to begin with. Jerryd Bayless and Greivis Vasquez are forced to come in and provide the shooting, but they can't pull it off every game. Jabari Parker is still finding his rhythm after missing most of last season to injury.
This Bucks team is made of a lot of weirds parts and it remains to be seen if they can all fit together. If the Bucks don't get it together soon they could fall out of the playoff race and be destined for lower conference mediocrity.
While the Hornets had an ugly game Friday they still look like they're headed in the right direction. Nicolas Batum has continued his stellar play and Kemba Walker has kept up his numbers as well. Marvin Williams is still a solid stretch four that provides the spacing that Al Jefferson needs. Frank Kaminsky, Cody Zeller, and Spencer Hawes all fall into the solid but not spectacular class of role players on the team. Jeremy Lamb and Jeremy Lin have kept up their solid numbers over the past few games. The Hornets still look like a team that's moving in the right direction. There will be more games like Fridays against Cleveland, but what matters is the long run.