Time: 7:00 PM CT
TV: Fox Sports Oklahoma
Radio: WWLS (98.1 FM OKC / 97.1 FM Tulsa)
The Oklahoma City Thunder looks to get back to .500 tonight against Charlotte — hosting the 9-16 Hornets for a 7:00 PM CT tip-off at Chesapeake Energy Arena. It will be the first of two match-ups between the teams this season.
Charlotte has lost seven of its last 8 games, but the Thunder may again be short-handed due to injury. Paul George figures to return from a two-game absence stemming from a calf contusion but is officially listed as questionable. Andre Roberson is also questionable to play due to a sprained ankle. The availability of both men will be determined closer to tip-off.
- Paul George: Questionable — Calf
- Andre Roberson: Questionable — Ankle
- Cody Zeller: Out — Knee
- Nicolas Batum: Out — Elbow
- Frank Kaminsky: Questionable — Ankle
Hornets Starters: Kemba Walker, Jeremy Lamb, Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, Marvin Williams, Dwight Howard
On the Boards. If there’s an area where the Hornets have a clear advantage over OKC, it’s on the boards. Charlotte is the second-best rebounding team in the NBA at 47 per game and allows the third-fewest offensive rebounds to opposing teams at just 8.4 per contest. OKC will need to stay physical to not get controlled on the glass.
More Alex. With both Paul George and Andre Roberson listed as questionable to play, Alex Abrines should continue to see an uptick in minutes. He’s started the last two games and scored a career-high 20 points against the Grizzlies on Saturday night in Memphis.
Familiar Face. Jeremy Lamb is a big part of the Charlotte offense, averaging a career-best 14.8 points per game. He will see plenty of run in the absence of Nicolas Batum, as he will likely replace him in the starting lineup.
The Point Guards. Charlotte is led by Kemba Walker, who comes in averaging 22.6 PPG and 6 APG. His match-up with Russell Westbrook will be one to watch, and Walker may find life easier should Andre Roberson indeed sit with his ankle sprain. Russ needs to remain awake on defensive to limit Walker’s damage.
The Big Men. Dwight Howard comes in with a 15.7 PPG, 12.4 RPG stat line — currently the third-leading rebounder in the NBA. He will be matched up with a flourishing Steven Adams, who is averaging 19.8 PPG and 9.6 RPG over the Thunder’s last five games.
Dwight Howard discusses Charlotte’s struggles and his match-up with Steven Adams. Via Hornets.