The Hornets and Celtics are set to go head to head in an exciting contest on Sunday. The teams have done quite a bit of business together over the past few offseasons, with two All-Stars and Terry Rozier being part of the shuffle. But, unfortunately for Charlotte, they got more bad injury news on Friday night that will greatly impact their ability to win this game.
Gordon Hayward, who has played at an All-Star level all season, will miss at least four weeks with a foot injury. He just cannot catch a break. As he was showing out in his new city, he had a chance to show Boston what they were missing out on, but now he won’t be there. This comes less than two weeks after news of LaMelo Ball’s possible season-ending wrist injury. Tough luck for a team that’s currently #4 in a tight East race.
Boston is a game under .500 at 24-25, entering off a big win over Houston on Friday. We are all reminded of just how good Robert Williams III is. Timelord, as they call him, has gotten better with every year he’s been in the pros. And now he looks to be every bit the star center they have been missing.
ODDS: The Celtics are favored by 10 points in this one, Charlotte a +10 underdog. The over/under is set at 222 points.
Short-Handed Hornets Seek Critical Win
Not many people foresaw the Hornets being anywhere near the playoffs in 2021. Things have always just sort of gone wrong for the franchise in the last decade. But now, at 25-23, they have a chance to rewrite that. Even with Hayward and LaMelo out, there is still some talent. But Malik Monk will also need to get healthy so that he can be the scorer they need off the bench.
Miles Bridges has had some huge scoring performances. Terry Rozier now becomes the top option, and he will be up for the task. Averaging better than 20 points per game and close to a 50-40-90 shooting season, Scary Terry has been incredible to watch. He’ll certainly want to play big against his former team.
Celtics Seeking Move Back to .500
Seeds 4-9 in the East are separated by just 3.5 games, and a lot can happen over the next month and a half. That will determine which three teams get guaranteed spots and who has to enter the play-in tournament in order to fight to qualify. The Bulls currently occupy the 10th spot, three games behind #9. They would make it, though, as 7-10 will go head-to-head.
Kemba Walker has been in and out of the lineup as they do maintenance on his knee. Evan Fournier busted out by scoring 20 in the fourth quarter of the Houston win. He has finally arrived in Boston. They have gotten decent backup minutes from Luke Kornet, the 7-footer that can also shoot the three effectively.
Boston knows that Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown can ball. But they lose when the other guys don’t step up. They’ll need Kemba and Smart to play well.
Hornets Keep Things Tight
The game will be tighter than expected, so make sure you bet this wisely.
FREE PLAY: HORNETS +10
OVER/UNDER: UNDER 222