NBA Basketball

Hornets eye another snack as Bulls visit

The Charlotte Hornets hope to continue to take advantage of a soft pocket in their schedule when they host the Chicago Bulls on Saturday night.

The Hornets will be playing the second night of a home back-to-back, still riding the high of a late flurry that produced an improbable 100-92 win over Memphis on Friday.

Charlotte (25-26) trailed most of the night and was still down 90-85 with less than five minutes to play before getting consecutive 3-pointers from Marvin Williams in a 11-point run that turned the game around.

The win continued a stretch in which the Hornets have taken care of business against some of the NBA's weakest teams -- Phoenix, New York and Memphis twice -- amid losses to Indiana, Milwaukee and Boston.

"We didn't just survive; we got better," Hornets coach James Borrego noted before Friday's win, talking about a road-heavy January schedule. "I think we're in a good place here."

In the Bulls, the Hornets will be facing a team that has lost four of five. But that one win came Wednesday night in a 105-89 triumph at Miami.

The Bulls (12-40) were the ones dealing with a back-to-back that night -- on the road, no less -- having opened a five-day, three-game trip with a 122-117 loss at Brooklyn on Tuesday.

Chicago will take the floor with a different roster than the one that produced Wednesday's win, although only one of the two changes will be apparent.

The Bulls finalized a deal for Timothe Luwawu-Cabarrot on Friday, acquiring the swingman and cash from Oklahoma City for a future second-round pick.

To create a roster spot, Chicago formally waived Carmelo Anthony, which had been considered a formality ever since he was acquired from Houston on Jan. 22.

As the trade deadline approaches, the Bulls have been rumored to be active in talks involving veteran point guards, potentially one to complement current starter Kris Dunn.

The 24-year-old has been wildly inconsistent in his second year with the Bulls, as demonstrated by his zero-assist, six-turnover disaster Tuesday against the Nets, followed by his eight-assist, three-turnover contribution to Wednesday's win.

If new coach Jim Boylen is bothered by the inconsistency, he hasn't demonstrated it verbally.

"He's one of the most respectful, coachable and for-the-team guys I've ever been around at this level and at that position," Boylen told reporters at Thursday's practice.

"He wants to lead; he wants to make the correct plays; he wants the team to function well when he's on the floor. It matters to him. When he doesn't play well, it bothers him and he doesn't make excuses.

"When you have that attitude, I have great hope for you to improve."

Dunn was out of action while recovering from a sprained left MCL suffered in the preseason when the Bulls and Hornets split a home-and-home series in October.

Zach LaVine produced the difference in Chicago's 112-110 home victory in the opener of the sequence, capping a 32-point effort with two tie-breaking free throws with 0.5 seconds remaining.

The Hornets got even two nights later at home, using a 45-point second quarter and 30 points from Kemba Walker as the foundation for a 135-106 shellacking.

Saturday's game completes the three-game season series.

--Field Level Media

Updated February 1, 2019

Sports Data API Powered by STATS © 2019 by STATS.
Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS is strictly prohibited.