The Charlotte Hornets look to end their losing streak against the San Antonio Spurs on Monday. Their Western Conference road trip isn't going so well, they've lost three straight games and are falling in the conference standings. On the positive side, LaMelo Ball has been exceptional for them in his rookie campaign with many believing he's a definite lock for 'Rookie of the Year'.
The San Antonio Spurs, on the other hand, have impressed heavily this season. DeMar DeRozan is playing at an All-Star level and has led the team to a 22-17 record with the 7th spot in the Western Conference.
Fixture: Charlotte Hornets vs San Antonio Spurs | NBA Season 2020-21.
Date & Time: Monday, March 22nd; 8:00 PM ET (Tuesday, March 23rd; 5:30 AM IST).
Venue: AT&T Center, San Antonio, TX
San Antonio Spurs preview
The San Antonio Spurs missed the playoffs last year but are looking great this season. Gregg Popovich's men have taken this franchise right in the middle of playoff contention again and with a 22-17 record, they have exceeded expectations. DeMar DeRozan and co. have won four of their last six games and have a fairly easy schedule ahead of them. Seven of their next nine games are against teams with a lower than .500 winning record.
LaMarcus Aldridge has officially left the team and his backup center Jakob Poeltl hasn't disappointed. Poeltl is leading the team in rebounds and blocks and is also contributing 7.1 points a night. Meanwhile, young point guard Dejounte Murray has been putting up great production as well and his contributions have been invaluable.
Key player - DeMar DeRozan
DeMar DeRozan has been incredible this year. He is averaging 20.3 points per game while also dishing out a career-high 7.5 assists a night. He is undoubtedly the San Antonio Spurs' best player and he has had 20+ points in the last four games he's played including a 30-point outing against Dallas.
San Antonio Spurs predicted lineup
G - Dejounte Murray, G - Derrick White, F - DeMar DeRozan, F - Keldon Johnson, C - Jakob Poeltl.
Charlotte Hornets preview
The Charlotte Hornets have certainly surpassed everyone's expectations. They've missed the playoffs for the last four years, but this year's offseason additions have turned the fortunes of the franchise around. The Hornets look set to end their playoff drought this season and Gordon Hayward, Terry Rozier and rookie LaMelo Ball deserve credit.
Terry Rozier is averaging 20.4 points per game this season while also grabbing 1.4 steals a night. Rozier's thunderous dunks and game-winners have created highlights and he is in spectacular form right now. Gordon Hayward hasn't disappointed either, as he is averaging a similar stat line to Rozier with 20.4 points and 1.4 steals a game. Forward PJ Washington has fulfilled his role perfectly, leading the Charlotte Hornets in rebounds and blocks.
Key player - LaMelo Ball
LaMelo Ball is having an exceptional rookie campaign. He is leading all rookies in eight of the ten recorded stats and has led the 'Rookie of the Year' power rankings for weeks. Ever since Ball's made the starting lineup, he's averaging nearly 20 points, 6.2 assists and 1.7 steals per game and is also shooting 42.6% from three. He already has fourteen 20+ point games including a career-high 34 points against Utah. LaMelo Ball is amazingly third-best in the entire league in steals with 65, he's 5 steals behind the leader T.J. McConnell (70).
Charlotte Hornets predicted lineup
G - LaMelo Ball, G - Terry Rozier, F - Gordon Hayward, F - PJ Washington, C - Cody Zeller.
Hornets vs Spurs match prediction
The San Antonio Spurs' current record and form make them slight favorites over the Charlotte Hornets. The young point guard battle between LaMelo Ball and Dejounte Murray will be thrilling to watch as both players lead the team in steals and are fairly similar in style of play.
Moreover, the Charlotte Hornets have LaMelo Ball, Terry Rozier and Cody Zeller listed as questionable. The two guards left the game against the Clippers after facing injuries and did not return. With a fairly healthy lineup, the San Antonio Spurs' chances of grabbing a win are high.
Where to watch the Hornets vs Spurs game?
The Charlotte Hornets vs San Antonio Spurs game will have local coverage on FOX Sports Southwest and FOX Sports Southeast. The match can also be streamed live with an NBA League Pass.