The 31-27 Utah Jazz have lost 3 straight games and dropped to the #7 seed in the Western Conference playoffs. The Jazz are 2 game behind the Golden State Warriors for the #6 seed. The Jazz look to get back on track against the 13-44 Charlotte Bobcats who have the worst record in in the league. The game will be at Energy Solutions Arena (7:00 pm Mountain, FSN-Carolina, FSN-Rocky Mountain Extra, NBA LP).
The Bobcats have lost 4 straight games including 106-84 at the Los Angeles Clippers Tuesday night. The Jazz lost at home to the Atlanta Hawks Wednesday night 102-91. This is the last game of a 3 game home stand for the Jazz. They go on the road for 4 games starting Monday at the Milwaukee Bucks.
Utah has beaten Charlotte 7 straight times overall, and 5 straight times in Salt lake City. The Jazz won in Charlotte 112-102 on January 9 of this year. In that game the Jazz never trailed, and built up a 19 point halftime lead. The Bobcats would not get closer than 10 points in the second half.
Charlotte is being outscored 103-94 this season. The Bobcats are 26th or worse in both categories. Charlotte is shooting 42% from the field and 34.7% from 3 point range. The Bobcats are last in the former, and 22nd in the latter. Charlotte makes 74.9% from the free throw line. Charlotte averages 41.1 rebounds per game and gives up 44.8 per game. The Bobcats are 22nd or worse in both categories. Charlotte opponents are shooting 46.6% from the field and 38.1% from 3 point range. The Bobcats are 27th or worse in both categories. Charlotte averages 18.9 assists, 7.1 steals, 6.3 blocks, and 14.1 turnovers per game.
Guard Kemba Walker averages 17.6 points, 3.5 rebounds, 5.5 assists, and 1.9 steals per game. Guard Ramon Sessions averages 14.6 points, 2.9 rebounds, and 3.9 assists. Guard Gerald Henderson averages 13.4 points, 3.6 rebounds, and 2.1 assists. Center Byron Mullens averages 12.5 points, 7.8 rebounds, and 1.6 assists. Guard Ben Gordon averages 12.2 points. Forward Michael Kidd-Gilchrist averages 9 points, 5.6 rebounds, and a block per game.
Utah is being outscored 98.6-98.3 this season. The Jazz are #11 in scoring and #18 in points allowed. The Jazz are shooting 45.2% from the field and 36.3% from 3 point range. UTah is #13 in the former and #10 in the latter. Utah is #11 in free throw shooting at 76.6%. The Jazz average 42 rebounds per game and give up 41.2 per game. Utah opponents are shooting 45.8% from the field and 37.4% from 3 point range. The Jazz are 20th or worse in both categories. Utah averages 22.8 assists, 8.4 steals, 6.4 blocks, and 14.9 turnovers.
Center Al Jefferson averages 17.5 points, 9.5 rebounds, 2.1 assists, and 1.2 blocks per game. Forward Paul Millsap averages 15.1 points, 7.4 rebounds, 2.6 assists, 1.3 steals, and 1.1 blocks per game. Guard Gordon Hayward has missed the last 10 games with a shoulder injury. He is listed as questionable tonight. He averages 13.5 points, 2.9 rebounds, and 2.5 assists per game. Guard Mo Williams averages 12.9 points and 6.7 assists per game. He is out indefinitely with a thumb injury.Guard Randy Foye averages 11.8 points, 2.2 assists, and 1.5 rebounds per game. Derrick Favors, Marvin Williams, DeMarre Carroll, Enes Kanter, Alec Burks, Jamaal Tinsley, and Earl Watson also get time in the rotation.
Utah should win this game rather easily because even though the Jazz are struggling the Bobcats are just awful.