When the Charlotte Hornets take the floor for their In-Season Tournament game against the Miami Heat, they may be doing so shorthanded. Four players have been listed as out, while two others are considered probable.
Ruled out for Charlotte are Cody Martin, James Bouknight, Frank Ntilikina, and Terry Rozier. There is a possibility that Gordon Hayward and Brandon Miller may still end up playing despite being on the injury report. This will be the fifth straight game that Rozier will miss while the trio of Bouknight, Ntilikina, and Martin are yet to make an appearance this season, while Hayward and Miller have played in all nine games for the Hornets this season.
Having Hayward and/or Miller available should help the Hornets’ cause against a superior Heat team on Tuesday. With that being said, there is a reason why Miami is favored despite the game being played at the Spectrum Center in Charlotte. Should one or both Hayward or Miller not be able to play, it would make an already difficult task that much harder. The Hornets have an incredibly small margin for error and will need their fair share of things to go their way in the contest.
This contest will be Charlotte’s second of the In-Season Tournament. The Hornets were able to come out victorious with a 124-117 win over the Washington Wizards last Wednesday, a game they had to win, considering the rest of In-Season Tournament Group B consists of their next opponent (Miami), the Milwaukee Bucks, and New York Knicks. Washington and New York are the only winless teams in the group, while Charlotte, Miami, and Milwaukee are all 1-0.
While it may be a long shot for the Hornets to advance past group play and into the knockout rounds, they have put themself into a position where it could be possible.