The Dallas Mavericks will host the Charlotte Hornets at the American Airlines Center on Monday, December 13th.
The Hornets will head into this game off a 124-123 win against the Sacramento Kings, which has seen them improve to 15-13 on the season. The Mavericks, meanwhile, are coming off a 103-84 win against the OKC Thunder to improve to 13-13 on the season.
Fixture - Charlotte Hornets vs Dallas Mavericks | 2021-22 NBA Season.
Date & Time - Monday, December 13th, 2021; 8:30 PM ET (Tuesday, December 14th, 2021; 7:00 AM IST).
Venue - American Airlines Center, Dallas, TX.
Charlotte Hornets Preview
The Charlotte Hornets will feature a heavily depleted roster in their game against the Dallas Mavericks. With four rotational players sidelined due to COVID-19 protocol, the Hornets' 8-9 man rotation has faced severe pressure.
With both LaMelo Ball and Ish Smith out of the lineup, the Hornets will be severely shorthanded in their guard rotation. With Terry Rozier stepping up as the point guard, the Hornets will also have to look at Cody Martin and James Bouknight to contribute.
The win against Sacramento did show some signs of hope. Ending a two-game losing streak, the Hornets showed tenacity, as they cut through a third-quarter deficit to make the game close heading into the fourth.
Featuring a great performance by the Hornets' rookie James Bouknight, the side will hope to hang on to their winning record as their roster recovers.
Key Player - Terry Rozier
In the absence of LaMelo Ball, Terry Rozier often steps in as the primary ball handler for the Charlotte Hornets. Although he didn't play for the team in the game against the Kings, the Hornets will see Rozier in the lineup against Dallas.
Rozier is a highly underrated player and scorer. His game features some nifty handling along with shifty hesitation moves and finishing. With a fairly reliable shot from beyond the arc as well, Rozier presents himself as a solid scoring option for the team.
Paired alongside Cody Martin in the backcourt, Rozier could take on more of a facilitator's role in this game. The priority for the Charlotte Hornets will be to get Miles Bridges and Gordon Hayward into a rhythm.
By establishing a flow to their scoring, the Hornets will look to rely on their frontcourt duo to stop themselves from bleeding or prevent scoring droughts.
Charlotte Hornets Predicted Lineup
G - Terry Rozier | G - Kelly Oubre Jr. | F - Miles Bridges | F - Gordon Hayward | C - Vernon Carey Jr.
Dallas Mavericks Preview
The Dallas Mavericks have struggled to establish a rhythm in the month of December. Going 2-3 in their last five games, the Mavericks will look to end their three-game road trip with a win.
A huge omission from their roster heading into their next game is superstar Luka Doncic. The Slovenian missed the game against the Thunder on the road. He is also expected to miss the clash against Charlotte as the Dallas Mavericks return home.
Doncic's absence does put some strain on the Mavericks roster. As the primary ball handler and their All-Star candidate, Doncic is a key player for them. However, Jalen Brunson did a great job covering for Doncic by moving into the starting rotation against OKC.
Against the Hornets, the Dallas Mavericks will look to their frontcourt and their big men to take advantage of the depleted Charlotte roster.
Key Player - Kristaps Porzingis
The Dallas Mavericks will look to their star big man to rise to the occasion against the Charlotte Hornets. Kristaps Porzingis makes up the second part of the Mavericks' one-two punch alongside Luka Doncic, and for good reason.
Porzingis is one of the most versatile big men in the game. With a sweet shooting stroke, Porzingis can easily stretch the floor and also function out of the high post. While also factoring in his athleticism and shot blocking ability, Porzingis has tremendous potential. His performance is key to the Mavericks' success.
Porzingis does tend to be a highly inconsistent player. However, the lack of a solid and durable big man in the Charlotte Hornets' rotation presents the perfect opportunity for the Latvian to take over the game.
Dallas Mavericks Predicted Lineup
G - Jalen Brunson | G - Reggie Bullock | F - Dorian Finney-Smith | F - Kristaps Porzingis | C - Dwight Powell.
Hornets vs Mavericks Match Prediction
The Dallas Mavericks should emerge as the winners in their game against the Charlotte Hornets.
Given that both sides will be missing their stars, the overall depletion of the Hornets' roster could see the team severely shorthanded in the frontcourt. Against a team such as Dallas, which features a number of talented big men, the Charlotte Hornets might struggle to fall into a rhythm offensively.
However, should the Hornets find their mojo from outside the three-point line, their odds of winning will improve significantly.
Where to watch Hornets vs Mavericks game?
The game will be locally broadcast on Bally Sports Southwest. The game will be available on the NBA's League Pass platform too. Fans can also listen to the game on radio by tuning into 97.1 The Eagle.