Game Day: Houston Rockets Look to Sting Hornets and Climb Ladder

By Tamberlyn Richardson
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Dec 23, 2014; Milwaukee, WI, USA; Charlotte Hornets guard Kemba Walker (15) passes the ball as Milwaukee Bucks center Zaza Pachulia (27) defends during the first quarter at BMO Harris Bradley Center. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports

Leaders:

Charlotte:

Rockets:

Keys To Winning:

  • A huge disparity exists between how many points these two teams score and their pace. The Rockets need to push the pace to take advantage of that benefit.
  • The Hornets enter the game dejected given their recent elimination from the post season. Jumping out to a quick lead could prove beneficial as Charlotte will likely toss in the towel at that point
  • With so many injuries on the Hornets combined with a 4-game losing streak and elimination from the playoffs its hard to imagine the Hornets will be pumped up for tonight’s game. Having said that they finish on the road Wednesday in Toronto so perhaps they’ll try to finish with a win at home.
  • On the other hand if Charlotte can lose their final 2-games it may help improve their lottery pick. They currently rank 19th giving them the 9th pick if the balls fall as projected.
  • While the Rockets rank first in the number of 3-pointers made per game the Hornets rank 27th, on top of that Houston rank atop the league at defending the 3 while Charlotte rank 23rd. The disparity of those two stats should speak to a huge advantage for Houston. 
  • Notably in the past 10 games Houston’s defense hasn’t been very good and part of that is due to playing the Spurs twice as well as the team finding their defensive rhythm with Howard back. They need to use their last 2 games versus Charlotte and Utah to get better specifically on that end of the court.

Next: And the magic eight ball predicts...

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