Charlotte Hornets look to sweep season series against the Phoenix Suns

Charlotte Hornets Kemba Walker. (Photo by Barry Gossage/NBAE via Getty Images)
Charlotte Hornets Kemba Walker. (Photo by Barry Gossage/NBAE via Getty Images) /

The Charlotte Hornets are about to go on a tough three-game road stretch. A home win over the Phoenix Suns would help provide much-needed momentum before heading out.

Although they are two games under .500, the Charlotte Hornets (21-23) still have playoff aspirations. Still, they only have a 1.5 game cushion over the Detroit Pistons for the 8th and final playoff spot, so they can’t exactly rest on their laurels. With road games against the likes of the Indiana Pacers and Milwaukee Bucks on the horizon, their upcoming home game against the Phoenix Suns (11-35) seems all too important.

The Hornets have already defeated the Suns once this season. That was a fairly close one for most of the game, with Charlotte narrowly winning in Phoenix, 119-113. The Hornets weren’t exactly at their best from behind the arc, shooting only 28%, but thankfully, they made up for it at the free-throw line, making twenty-four freebies.

Charlotte’s last contest was a 114-95 victory over the Sacramento Kings. As mentioned before, they are 8th in the Eastern Conference. The Suns’ last game was a very close 109-111 defeat at the hands of the Toronto Raptors. The Suns are last in the Western Conference. This the second of two games in which these teams will play.

Charlotte Hornets vs Phoenix Suns
5:00 p.m. EST, Saturday, January 19th, 2019
Spectrum Center
Fox Sports Southeast

Injury Report:


Cody Zeller – Hand (Out)


Jamal Crawford – Knee (Game-Time Decision)

Things to watch for:

It’s yet another classic night as the Hornets will honor former Charlotte legend, Glen Rice. If you’re going to the game, get there early for another bobblehead.  If you’ll recall, Devin Booker left the game in Phoenix with back spasms, playing only 12 minutes. He’s healthy for this one and barring a repeat injury; he could make things tough on the Hornets.

Keys to the game:

I mentioned in the previous Suns preview about Phoenix’s penchant for fouling. It showed in their last contest against the Hornets as Charlotte shot thirty-four free-throws; that again should be an emphasis. Something else to note is that Phoenix has the second most steals in the NBA. Charlotte, however, gives up the second-fewest turnovers, so it’ll be interesting to see which side wins out.

Outside of that, Phoenix is near the bottom of the league in just about every other category, so it’s important that Charlotte avoids looking past the Suns, as another loss to an inferior team would not be good for morale.

Next. Miles Bridges to participate in Dunk Contest. dark

We’re over halfway through January, and that means it’s the time of year where every game is crucial for playoff seeding. It’s not exactly a must-win, but another loss before going to face two of the East’s best would certainly set them back. We’ll see if they can avoid that fate Saturday evening in Charlotte.