Both Golden State Warriors and Charlotte Hornets are on course of meeting their target of reaching the NBA playoffs. They're both placed eighth in their respective conference but still have to display more consistency to seal a postseason berth.
Fixture: Golden State Warriors vs Charlotte Hornets | NBA Season 2020-21
Date & Time: Saturday, February 20th, 8 PM ET (Sunday, 6:30 AM IST)
Venue: Spectrum Center, Charlotte, NC
Golden State Warriors Preview
The Golden State Warriors are capable of experiencing the highest-of-highs and lowest-of-lows in the same game. That was the case against Orlando Magic where they first trailed by 17, then led by 13, but eventually ended up losing. The underlying factor behind such extremes is how good or bad Stephen Curry is playing, which underlines the team's reliance on the two-time MVP.
Golden State Warriors' forced run with small ball is set to last another game with James Wiseman unlikely to return before next week. With Draymond Green playing at center, Juan Toscano-Anderson found his way to the starting lineup and has done a decent job, especially on the boards.
Key Player - Stephen Curry
Stephen Curry's blazing run has cooled off a bit in the last couple of games. He's managed the same volume but struggled to be efficient. Nonetheless, Curry turned up in the clutch against Orlando and has enough in his tank to torch the Charlotte Hornets. He's averaging 29.9 points on a nearly 50-40-90 clip and will be in the running for MVP honors if the Golden State Warriors finish in the top four seeds.
Golden State Warriors Predicted Lineup
G Stephen Curry, G Kelly Oubre Jr., F Andrew Wiggins, F Juan Toscano-Anderson, C Draymond Green
Charlotte Hornets Preview
The Charlotte Hornets decided to splash the cash on Gordon Hayward this offseason in a bid to make the playoffs and the move has worked out so far. He's averaging a career-high 22.3 points per game and acts as the glue that binds this team together. The Hornets lost their previous game in his absence but Hayward should be back against the Golden State Warriors.
Rookie LaMelo Ball has lived up to the billing so far. He's averaged 20.9 points, 6.3 assists, and 6.9 rebounds in his eight starts for the Charlotte Hornets. Meanwhile, Devonte' Graham has continued to struggle after a breakout sophomore season. He's also likely to sit out on Saturday with a knee issue.
Key Player - Terry Rozier
Terry Rozier has proved his haters wrong to become the best two-way player on the Charlotte Hornets. He's scoring 20.6 points per game this season on 49% shooting including a 44.5% clip from downtown, all career-highs. Not only will Rozier be amongst the go-to players going forward, he'll also be tasked with defending Stephen Curry against the Golden State Warriors.
Charlotte Hornets Predicted Lineup
G LaMelo Ball, G Terry Rozier, F Gordon Hayward, F PJ Washington, C Cody Zeller
Warriors vs Hornets Match Prediction
The Golden State Warriors will be playing their third game in four days and didn't exactly start their road trip on the right note. Meanwhile, the Charlotte Hornets are well rested due to game postponements. With Stephen Curry struggling a bit with efficiency, the Hornets will hold the edge on paper. Expect LaMelo and co. to come away with a close win here.
Where to watch Warriors vs Hornets?
Local coverage of the game will be available on NBC Sports Bay Area and FOX Sports Southeast. You can also live stream the same on NBA League Pass.