What: Charlotte Hornets (13-13) vs. Detroit Pistons (13-12)
When: 7:00 p.m. EST
Where: Spectrum Center; Charlotte, NC
How to watch: Fox Sports Southeast, NBA League Pass
After losing three games in a row to quality Western Conference opponents, the Charlotte Hornets managed to beat the Denver Nuggets on Friday night and the New York Knicks on Sunday. Now, the team returns home for a five game home stand that begins with a tilt against the Detroit Pistons. The Hornets will be looking to achieve their longest winning streak of the season against Dwane Casey’s squad.
The Pistons come into this game on a five game losing streak and will be looking to even the season series with the Hornets. Charlotte won 113-103 in Detroit on November 11th which was (at the time) their third road win of the season. While the Pistons have struggled as of late, they have a very talented team.
Their front court is led by the impressive duo of Andre Drummond and Blake Griffin. Both are playing at a high level and Griffin has shown that he’s one of the best passing big men in the NBA. Griffin was given a rest against the Philadelphia 76ers on Monday night, but Luke Kennard had an excellent performance against them even in defeat.
While Kemba Walker has been the MVP of this Hornets team all season, another unsung hero has been Jeremy Lamb. He is currently averaging a career high 15.1 points per game and has proven that he can be counted upon if Kemba struggles (and he has been struggling over the last few weeks). I questioned the Tony Parker when it was announced, but he has been surprisingly good.
The Pistons will be looking to exploit their advantage on the boards in this game. If the Hornets can limit the Pistons to only one shot per possession, they’ll have a good chance to win this game. Expect to see Luke Kennard get extended minutes for coach Casey due to the absence of backup point guard Ish Smith. Reggie Jackson continues to be the starting point guard for the team and he’s been pretty solid this season.
Overall, the Hornets have to take advantage of this home stand. Although there are plenty of good teams Charlotte will play over the next week, this is a chance for the team to improve it’s record and win tiebreakers over some eastern conference playoff contenders. James Borrego’s team must be ready to compete on both ends of the floor.
The three point line will once again be important to the Hornets success whether it is making their attempts or limiting the Pistons from the outside. Although the Pistons aren’t one of the best three point shooting teams, they have a lot of capable shooters. However, they’ve been bit by the injury bug and that has impacted their second unit. In the end, the Hornets can’t afford to lose at home especially due to their lack of road success. We’ll see if they can get the job done tonight at Spectrum center.