Well, decent enough anyhow. This Sixers are now 5-2 over their last seven games, and they don’t even have their number one overall pick Ben Simmons on the court yet. Joel Embiid has truly been a renaissance on the court for Philly, and they have even gotten improved guard play this season. While the Sixers certainly aren’t world beaters just yet, they’re no longer a laughing stock. This loss to the Sixers, while damaging, isn’t quite as damning as Hornets fans might think.
Charlotte Desperately Needs a Second Scorer
This one is obvious, I know. But the Hornets really need someone besides Kemba that can create offense. Batum is great, and he can definitely score the ball, but the’s not the type of player that you want to rely on as your second scoring option.
Charlotte’s roster is flush with well-rounded players that do a few things well (Zeller, Batum, MKG, etc.), but no one besides Walker is a scorer. Perhaps the Hornets should pursue a one-dimensional scorer at the deadline. Someone like Lou Williams comes to mind. I’m not sure what sort of deal the Lakers might make, but that’s the Trade Machine is for.
The Next Five Games are Crucial
On the upside, five of the Hornets next six games are in Charlotte. On the downside, five of the six are against playoff caliber teams. Perhaps most importantly is the January 23rd matchup with the Washington Wizards, who the Hornets are battling for the 8th seed.
The only non-playoff team in this stretch is the Brooklyn Nets, who the Hornets already managed to lose to once. It’s not unthinkable that Charlotte could go 1-4 over this stretch, which may be devastating to their playoff hopes. There are three very winnable games coming up: Portland, Brooklyn, and Washington.
The other three are at the Boston Celtics, home against the Toronto Raptors, and home against the Golden State Warriors. The Hornets must win the three games they should, and hope to steal one from the other three. This stretch will really show us a lot about who the Hornets are, and what they can really do.