After a much-needed 123-110 win over Miami, the Golden State Warriors (3-2) travel to face the Charlotte Hornets (2-3), who just lost 113-93 to Orlando. The Hornets will once again be without LaMelo Ball, Terry Rozier, and Cody Martin, while the Warriors are missing Donte DiVincenzo and Andre Iguodala.
Can the Hornets stun the basketball world and defeat the Warriors? Odds, predictions, key matchups, and starting lineups are below.
Golden State Warriors vs. Charlotte Hornets Betting Odds
Golden State enters this matchup as considerable favorites; the spread is -9 Warriors with their moneyline at an ugly -410. On the other hand, Charlotte’s moneyline can be found at +330, so they must win 24% of the time to be profitable. The 234 over under is sizable, and this matchup has a recent history of hitting the under.
Golden State Warriors vs. Charlotte Hornets Prediction
This -9 line doesn’t deter me in the slightest, so I’m taking the Warriors to cover here.
Charlotte will be without their starting backcourt of Ball and Rozier, which is the engine of their offense. Last season, the duo combined for 39.4 PPG, 12.1 APG, and 11 RPG on fantastic three-point shooting. Both operate effectively on or off-ball, which diversifies the offense.
The Hornets were forced to play against Orlando last game without these two; they only managed 93 points and lost by 20. Dennis Smith Jr and Kelly Oubre are solid role players, but they cannot be relied upon to run the pick and roll. Defenders can stay under the screen against Smith Jr and camp out just above the free throw line, as he doesn’t possess the necessary pull-up three-point shooting to punish them. Meanwhile, Oubre isn’t a skilled enough ball handler or playmaker to constantly orchestrate the action. Their place in the starting lineup also severely depletes Charlotte’s guard depth, which doesn’t bode well considering the Warriors bring Jordan Poole and Moses Moody off the bench.
Small forward Gordon Hayward is the sole consistent source of offense, but he’s more effective as a secondary scorer and playmaker rather than a primary option. Plus, defensive ace Andrew Wiggins awaits him every possession. In addition, Mason Plumlee is completely hindered because Charlotte’s guards cannot set him up through the pick and roll. It could be interesting if PJ Washington, Hayward, and Oubre go scorched-earth from three, but even then it’s doubtful they would be able to compensate for their plethora of deficiencies.
Defensively, Smith Jr and Washington may be obstacles from time to time, but the Hornets starting lineup lacks the talent to seriously bother the explosive Warriors. Golden State always has the option of throwing Hayward and Plumlee into countless pick and rolls to get the mismatch they covet. The bench matchup would be thought-provoking if the Hornets were fully healthy, but their second unit currently lacks the scoring burst necessary to keep pace with Poole, Moody, and Wiseman.
Overall, the Hornets are punching far above their weight class. The Warriors likely acquire a commanding lead by the middle of the 2nd quarter and never look back. Charlotte would have to be scorching hot from deep to challenge the Warriors, and even then they may not cover the +9 due to a horrendous defense.
- Warriors are 3-7 ATS in their last 10 road games
- Under is 9-1 in the last 10 meetings
Which team will win the positional matchups? Check out below for these vital battles.
Dennis Smith Jr vs. Stephen Curry
A hyper-athletic guard who struggles from deep versus the greatest three-point shooter of all time. They are polar opposites, but Smith Jr and Curry are both crucial to their respective teams here. Charlotte needs Smith Jr to effectively run the pick and roll and set up teammates for high shot quality attempts. Also, the Hornets require him to chase Curry and at least contest his shots. If Curry easily exploits Smith Jr and defends him well, then it’s unclear how Charlotte can break 100 points.
— Charlotte Hornets (@hornets) October 28, 2022
James Wiseman vs. Hornets bench
Although the Hornets lack guard depth, their center rotation is surprisingly decent. Nick Richards is producing 13.2 PPG and 7.4 RPG on a 71.4 FG%, while 7’1” Mark Williams is a physical presence in the paint. Meanwhile, power forward Jalen McDaniels chips in 10.2 PPG on a 48/64/100 shooting split. If Wiseman can protect the rim and match Richards’ scoring output, then the Warriors may convincingly win the bench minutes as well as the starter minutes.
pick & roll perfection
— Golden State Warriors (@warriors) October 28, 2022
Golden State Warriors Starting Lineup
Charlotte Hornets Starting Lineups
Golden State Warriors Injuries: Donte DiVincenzo (O), Andre Iguodala (O)
Charlotte Hornets Injuries: LaMelo Ball (O), Terry Rozier (O), Cody Martin (O)