Charlotte Hornets vs New York Knicks 3/30/22: Starting Lineups, Matchup Preview, Betting Odds, Live Stream

Charlotte Hornets vs New York Knicks Matchup Preview (3/30/22)

The 9th seed Charlotte Hornets (39-37) face the 11th seed New York Knicks (34-42) in probably the last chance the Knicks have to claim a playoff spot. The Hornets are 9-4 in March with the 5th Offensive Rating and 16th Defensive Rating. This difference is normal for the team, as they are a fast-paced offensive squad who struggles defensively. They just lost to the Denver Nuggets 113-109 in a hard-fought game. LaMelo Ball produced 22 points, 6 rebounds, and 11 assists on 38.0 FG%, while Miles Bridges contributed 27 points and 11 rebounds. Their weakness at center showed against the Nuggets, as likely-MVP Nikola Jokic had a monster triple-double – 26 points, 19 rebounds, 11 assists. Aaron Gordon added 21 points and 7 rebounds for the Nuggets on 56.2 FG%. Against the Knicks, the Hornets will be without Gordon Hayward again. He has not played a game since February 7th. He is averaging 16.1 PPG, 3.6 APG, and 4.6 RPG, so the Hornets will hope he can recover soon and increase their playoff chances. 

The Knicks are 4.5 games back of the 10th seed with 6 games left. They are already extremely unlikely to grab the 10th seed, but it will be effectively over if they lose this game to the Hornets. The Knicks are coming off a solid 109-104 win over the slumping Chicago Bulls. RJ Barrett scored 28 points and grabbed 6 rebounds, while Alec Burks had 27 points on 5/10 from three. Mitchell Robinson had a double-double (16 points,12 rebounds) and provided rim protection. For the Bulls, DeMar DeRozan exploded for 37 points, 6 rebounds, and 7 assists. Zach LaVine added 27 points on 8/17 from the field, but the duo couldn’t lead the Bulls to a victory. Evan Fournier is a game time decision for the Knicks, although it’s unlikely that he will play. Immanuel Quickley or Miles McBride will start in his place if he cannot play. Quentin Grimes and Nerlens Noel are out for this game. 

Charlotte Hornets vs New York Knicks Betting Odds

The Hornets are 2-1 against the Knicks this season, but the most recent contest was a 121-106 Knicks win on March 23rd. Barrett scored 30 points, and Toppin filled in for Randle with a line of 18 points, 11 rebounds, and 6 assists. In this final regular season matchup, I like the Charlotte Hornets to win a nail-biter. Both teams have plenty of motivation: the Knicks are fighting for their playoff lives, while the Hornets are very close to the 8th seed where they would avoid needing two wins to make the playoffs. The Knicks are playing well right now, but the Hornets have the edge in talent. The two factors that clinch it for me are clutch play and pace. The Knicks are 29th in FG% in clutch games, which are games within 5 points in the last 5 minutes. They don’t execute and miss shots in these moments. In terms of pace, the Knicks are 29th, while the Hornets are 5th. If two teams are essentially tied, I will usually go with the team who plays at a faster pace because I believe it’s easier for a team to adjust to a lower pace than to a higher one. 

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TV Schedule

Date: 3/30/22
Time: 7:30 PM ET
Arena: Madison Square Garden – New York, NY
Channel: NBA League Pass

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Charlotte Hornets Starting Lineup

PG: LaMelo Ball
SG: Terry Rozier
SF: Miles Bridges
PF: PJ Washington
C: Mason Plumlee

Charlotte Hornets Analysis

The Hornets are a fast-paced team who love to get out in transition and run the court. The Knicks are 29th in transition defense because Julius Randle and Mitchell Robinson are not the fastest players going down the court. Both players also love to crash the offensive glass, which is where the Hornets are vulnerable. If the Hornets can punish the Knicks for over committing to an offensive rebound by scoring easy transition points, it will help neutralize the Knicks interior advantage. LaMelo Ball, Terry Rozier, and Miles Bridges are dynamic players, but Mason Plumlee is a clear weakness at center. The Hornets should try to make this a shootout and count on their perimeter firepower outproducing the Knicks slow paint scoring. 

Miles Bridges is the X factor for the Hornets because of his two-way impact. He’s averaging 20.1 PPG, 7.1 RPG, and 3.8 APG on 48.7 FG%. Bridges excels in transition and attacks the basket with ease. Defensively, he uses his 6’7” hyper-athletic frame to stay in front of opponents. Bridges will have the difficult task of stopping RJ Barrett (25.8 PPG since the All-Star break). Barrett is the primary wing scorer for the Knicks, so limiting him would make it tough for the Knicks to keep up with this Hornets offense. 

New York Knicks Starting Lineup

PG: Alec Burks
SG: Evan Fournier
SF: RJ Barrett
PF: Julius Randle
C: Mitchell Robinson

New York Knicks Analysis

The Knicks can pummel the Hornets by dragging Plumlee into the pick and roll at the top of the key. Plumlee struggles with lateral movement and does not have the athleticism to recover quickly when beaten. Mitchell Robinson is a freak athlete who kills teams as a roll man. He’s a constant lob threat who will out-jump Plumlee on any given possession. The Hornets cannot adjust by swapping in backup center Montrezl Harrell because he is an undersized, offense-oriented center. If the Knicks are going to win, they need to slow down the game and make every possession last the full shot clock. They cannot keep up with this run and gun Hornets team, so the Knicks need to control the tempo. 

Alec Burks is the X factor for the Knicks. The Knicks are 4-1 in their last 5 games because Burks has been on fire, going for 19.0 PPG, 4.6 RPG, 3.0 APG, and 1.6 SPG on a 50 FG% and 50 3PT%. When he is clicking, the offense actually has some diversification in their scoring threats. The pick and roll also becomes far deadlier, which is the weapon the Knicks need in this game. He’s a sporadic player who cannot harness this efficiency for long stretches, so it’s not a given that he performs well. If the Knicks can get the Burks of the last 5 games, they will put up a strong fight. 

Charlotte Hornets vs New York Knicks Daily Fantasy Picks

In this matchup, I like Miles Bridges, LaMelo Ball, and Julius Randle. Bridges will torch the Knicks in transition, and he’s at 25.7 PPG in his last three games. The Hornets are turning to him early and often, so the volume will be there for him. LaMelo is averaging 22.1 PPG, 7.6 APG, and 6.2 RPG in his last 12 games. Ball has found his shooting stroke recently, shooting 43.4 3PT% on 8.8 3PA in that span. Burks has struggled to guard the pick and roll (26th percentile), which is LaMelo’s most common playtype by far. Finally, I like Knicks power forward Julius Randle because of the Hornets interior defense. PJ Washington and Mason Plumlee cannot handle Randle’s physicality. Randle is coming off a terrible performance against the Bulls, but he is still a constant 20/10 double-double threat. He’s averaging 19.8 FGA in March, so the Knicks trust him with the ball.

Braxton has been covering the NBA for Lineups since the 2022 season. He's worked with multiple collegiate coaching staffs regarding analytics and scouting, which has allowed him to understand the game on a deeper level. Braxton is also a contributor at Thunderous Intentions.

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