Gametime: 7:00 p.m. EST
Projected Starting Lineups
Tonight Charlotte heads to the Bankers Life Fieldhouse as they will look to beat Indiana and go into the All-Star break on a spectacular two-game winning streak.
To get that winning streak going, they'll have to go on the road and take down a very good Pacers team who quite possibly could be bringing back former All-Star Danny Granger who's been sidelined for the entire first half of the season. Now, there's really no doubt that the Bobcats are a huge underdog in this one simply because the Pacers are better in most aspects of the game. Despite how awesome Byron "Double Deuce" Mullens was Monday’s game against Boston, he'll be matched up against Hibbert, one of the best defensive big men in the league (95 DRtg which is 2nd in the league.)
Both teams are actually matched up pretty evenly in the back-court with the slight edge going to Charlotte. Both George Hill and Lance Stephenson have become solid role players on this team with Stephenson impressing me with how he's progressed after coming into the league as a troubled rookie. The reason why I prefer Charlotte’s duo is the simple fact that I see Kemba Walker stepping up his game a little bit now that he can work the pick and roll with Byron Mullens who can shoot that mid-range shot.
Despite the fact that Granger could return tonight, the Pacers are still built around both David West and Paul George. While George is such a superb all-around offensive player now that he's become a better ball-handler, I'm still going to be interested to see how Kidd-Gilchrist defends him. MKG was drafted with that 2nd pick because of his defense and it'll be a true test to see how he can match up with George, one of the NBA's best rising stars.
I have my doubts the Bobcats can pull off this upset on the road against Indiana but it'll be an interesting test for these young Charlotte players. And who knows what can happen – they have been playing better basketball as of late.