When: March 26, 2017 at 1:00 p.m. EST
Where: Spectrum Center, Charlotte, NC
TV: Fox Sports Southeast
Radio: WFNZ 610 AM
Hey, did you hear that Devin Booker scored 70 points in a NBA basketball game on Friday? Did you know that Devin Booker players for the Phoenix Suns? Well, fans of the Charlotte Hornets are going to get an up-close look at the young scoring phenom in an early start game on Sunday afternoon.
Charlotte is coming off a tough loss to the LeBron James’ led Cleveland Cavaliers. While they didn’t have the good fortune of catching James and the Cavs on a rest night for the superstar, they do have a great chance for a bounce back against one of the youngest squads in the NBA.
To say that the Suns are a young team isn’t hyperbole. They had the youngest starting five in league history earlier this week, younger than many of the starting fives in the NCAA tournament.
The sun isn’t shining that bright on basketball in Phoenix right now, but you can’t say the same for the future. Sure, there’s Booker, but he’s got a bunch of other young guns playing alongside him. There’s the high-flying Derrick Jones, Jr., who is absolutely joy to watch when he gets up in the air or out on the break. Then they’ve got Marquese Chriss, both an exciting young player and candidate to eventually usurp DeMarcus Cousins as the league leader in technical fouls. He’s already at nine in his rookie season and I have faith that he can hit double digits before the end of Game 82.
The Suns also seem to be ready to waive all of the white flags on this season. Suns coach Earl Watson gave DNPs to Tyson Chandler, Brandon Knight and Eric Bledsoe. Instead, he made sure that players like Alan Williams and Tyler Ulis got major minutes.
If Charlotte can get that kind of lineup out of Watson again on Sunday afternoon, they should feel good about their chances. I’d say that this Hornets team should always feel good about their chances, but that certainly hasn’t been the case most of this season.
The best news for Charlotte is probably that Ramon Sessions was cleared to play at the end of the week and might get out there on Sunday. I feel bad saying this, but given how the season has gone, it might actually be a boost for the Hornets if he can give it a go.
It will also be super helpful if Frank Kaminsky doesn’t shoot 0-for-9, like he did against Cleveland. Good games for Michael Kidd-Gilchrist and Jeremy Lamb would also be nice, and maybe can we get a breakout game from cult hero Briante Weber? I’m totally fine with that happening.
Charlotte has 10 games left, including Sunday’s tilt with the Suns, and they trail the Miami Heat by three games for the eighth spot in the playoffs. It’s not looking good, but a win against Phoenix sure would help. Or, you know, Steve Clifford could opt to start Weber and Christian Wood with the instructions that he wants a shootout between Booker and Kaminsky. I’d also be fine with watching that, because we’re deep into this season and it’s starting to get weird.