Charlotte Hornets @ Toronto Raptors Free Pick January 8th

2014 is gone and 2015 is upon us! I was 12-10 in my Toronto picks in ’14. I hope to get a streak going with my prediction today as the 24-10 Raptors host the 13-24 Charlotte Hornets this evening.

(13-24) Charlotte Hornets @ (24-10) Toronto Raptors

Raptors1

 

Probable starting line-ups:

Charlotte – Point Guard – Kemba Walker  Shooting Guard – Gerald Henderson  C- Bismack Biyombo  Small Forward – Michael Kidd-Gilchrist  Power Forward – Cody Zeller

Toronto – PG – Kyle Lowry  SG – Terrence Ross  C – Jonas Valanciunas  SF – Landry Fields  PF – Amir Johnson

Stats Leaders:

Charlotte – Points Per Game – Kemba Walker 18.4  Rebounds Per Game – Al Jefferson 8.2  Assists Per Game – Kemba Walker 5.5

Toronto – PPG – Kyle Lowry 20.6  RPG – Jonas Valanciunas 8.6  APG – Kyle Lowry 7.6

Team Scoring: (with league ranking in parentheses)

Charlotte – Points For (Per Game) – 95.4 (25th)  Points Against (Per Game) – 99.5 (18th)

Toronto – PF – 108.1 (3rd)  PA – 101.6 (22nd)

Overview:

The Charlotte Hornets come in to this evening’s contest winners of their last 3 games. Last night they were victorious at home 98-94 versus New Orleans. Point guard Kemba Walker led the team with 31 points on 12 of 24 shooting in 36 minutes. He was 6 of 8 from the foul line. He also had 4 assists and 4 rebounds. Shooting guard Gerald Henderson scored 16 points on 7 of 17 shooting in 36 minutes. He also had 7 rebounds and 6 assists. Small forward Michael Kidd-Gilchrist had a double-double with 13 points and 12 rebounds. He was 4 of 10 from the field in 36 minutes. The team shot 43% from the field, 28.6% from the 3 point line (4-14), and 76.9% from the free throw line (20-26). The Hornets trailed the Pelicans by 3 points going in to the 4th quarter but out-scored their opposition 31-24 in the final period. Charlotte is 5-12 on the road this season. They have won their last 2 road games. During their 3 game winning streak they have won all 3 games by a margin of less than 10 points. They have held their 4 opponents under 100 points. Tonight is the 2nd game of a back to back. They are 4-6 in the 2nd game of a back to back so far this season. Their next game is Saturday at New York.

The Toronto Raptors have dropped 3 straight games. On Sunday they were defeated at Phoenix 125-109. Center Jonas Valanciunas led the team with a double-double as he scored 21 points and pulled down 10 rebounds. He was 9 of 14 from the field in 33 minutes. Point guard Kyle Lowry scored 19 points on 6 of 17 shooting in 34 minutes. He also dished out 7 assists. Reserve power forward James Johnson and reserve shooting guard Louis Williams each chipped in with 17 points. Johnson was 7 of 9 from the field in 26 bench minutes. He also had 7 rebounds. Williams was 4 0f 1o from the field and 7 of 7 from the free throw line in 28 minutes. The team shot 45.8% from the field, 34.6% from the 3 point line (9-26), and 82.8% from the free throw line (24-29). The Raptors out-rebounded the Suns 43-41 in the contest. The Raptors faced a 22-point deficit heading to the 4th but did out-score Phoenix 33-27 in the final period. Toronto is 14-3 at home this season. They have won their last 5 home games. Their last 2 opponents have scored 125 or more points. Tonight is the start of a 6 game home stand. Their next game is Saturday at home versus Boston.

Last season Charlotte was victorious in all 3 meetings with Toronto. The Hornets have won the last 4 meetings with the Raptors. After tonight the 2 teams play 3 more times this season, March 6th at Charlotte, April 8th at Charlotte, and April 15th at Toronto.

Prediction:

The Raptors were abused in their last 2 road games so they should be thrilled to get back home. I think they’ll have an edge about them tonight with this being the start of a 6 game home stand. I’ll be surprised if Charlotte stays within 15. Take the Raptors -12 (1.90) (Bet365)

January 8, 2015 by : Posted in Basketball No Comments
Jeff

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Our resident NBA expert, Jeff has been handicapping NBA games for several years. He is an avid follower of the Toronto Raptors and the majority of games he handicaps will involve our lone Canadian NBA team.

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