Wolves at Hornets
1:00 pm CST
No local television
First, a bit of news: The Wolves have signed Miroslav Raduljica to a 2nd ten day contract, which will be the last 10 day they sign him to, as league rules prohibit more. After that, they will either have to sign him for the rest of the season or let him go. Obviously this has been a big topic of discussion on the site, but suffice it to say he hasn't impressed in very limited playing time since his arrival.
Now for the game. A rare afternoon tilt today to end the Wolves four game road trip. The Charlotte Hornets have had a very disappointing season thus far after their impressive 43 win effort last year. At just 16-25 at the half-way point this year, they have not lived up to expectations.
Their big move in the off-season was signing free agent swing man Lance Stephenson from the Pacers. That has not worked out as they hoped, and rumor has it that they have been shopping Stephenson around the league. His shooting in particular has been atrocious, which has contributed to a team wide offensive rating that is 27th in the league. This is exacerbated by the current injuries to Al Jefferson and Kemba Walker. Late word is that Jefferson will make his return today, but will be limited to around 15 minutes off the bench.
That said, Charlotte has been hot recently, winning six of their last seven, and their defense remains in the upper half of the league. They are the top defensive rebounding team in the league thanks in large part to terrific rebounding swing men in Stephenson and Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, both of whom have drb% over 20%. They also rarely commit shooting fouls, keeping opponents off the free throw line. On the other end, while they don't turn the ball over, they are also one of the worst shooting teams in the league and aren't strong on the offensive glass.
The Wolves come in off one of their most entertaining efforts of the year in their win in Denver on Saturday. They played well offensively and actually got several stops and made big plays down the stretch to grab that victory, and of course it was highlighted by Andrew Wiggins' career night, something we hope to see more of. Today's game should be interesting in that regard, facing a quality defense, and perhaps matched up with an excellent defender in Michael Kidd-Gilchrist.
Kevin Martin has been upgraded to questionable for today, while Pekovic remains doubtful and Rubio and Muhammad are out.
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