The Charlotte Hornets are looking to end their road trip on a high note after being subjected to a beat down at the hands of the Toronto Raptors Monday night. The Hornets were thoroughly dominated on both ends of the court and failed to ever make a serious push. Fortunately, tonight’s test should be a bit easier.
The Hornets are in Chicago to take on a Bulls team that is yet to win a game in this young season. The Bulls haven’t been able to find their footing on either end of the court, ranking in the bottom eight in both offensive and defensive rating. They allow 41 3-point attempts per game (most in the league) and opponents are hitting on those attempts at a slightly above average rate, so the Hornets will have a chance to get hot from the perimeter.
Offensively, the Bulls are driven by Zach LaVine and Jabari Parker. Parker is questionable for tonight with an upper respiratory infection, so the offense may be almost entirely dependent on LaVine’s production. The 23 year old guard sits right behind Kemba Walker in points per game, averaging a robust 32.3 per game on 61.8% shooting from the field and 45.0% shooting from behind the arc. Power forward Bobby Portis is capable of adding an added dose of scoring, but he’s struggled a bit to find his shot thus far. After that trio, the Bulls roster is mostly an offensive wasteland.
Another key point of interest tonight will be the play of Bulls rookie Wendell Carter Jr. The Duke product has started all three games for the Bulls and averaged a well balanced stat line of 6.7 points, 4.7 rebounds, 2.7 assists, and 1.3 blocks per game.
Joining Jabari Parker on the injury report for the Bulls is point guard Kris Dunn, who is out 4-6 weeks after spraining his knee in his first appearance of the season on Monday. Cameron Payne will step back into starting point guard duties, which is not a bad thing for the Hornets.