NBA Preview from The Sports Network
Monday, February 23rd (All times eastern)
New Orleans Hornets (32-22) at Sacramento Kings (12-45), 10 p.m.
(Sports Network) - The New Orleans Hornets hope to salvage the finale of a three-game road trip tonight when they face off with the woeful Sacramento Kings at ARCO Arena.
The Hornets fell to 0-2 on their trek in Salt Lake City on Saturday when Mehmet Okur scored 25 points and the Utah Jazz won their first game since the death of team owner Larry H. Miller with a 102-88 triumph over New Orleans.
Miller died last Friday, succumbing to complications from type 2 diabetes at the age of 64.
Chris Paul netted 24 points and seven assists for the Hornets, who fell to .500 on the road this season at 13-13. David West chipped in 18 points and 10 rebounds, while Rasual Butler scored 21 in defeat. The Hornets lost one night after faltering in overtime to the Lakers in Los Angeles.
New Orleans expects a boost from the return of Tyson Chandler tonight. It looked as if the veteran center's days with the Hornets came to an end last week when he was traded him to Oklahoma City. However, Chandler, who has been sidelined since January 19 with a sprained right ankle, failed his physical with the Thunder, killing the deal.
The Kings, who are opening up a three-game homestand tonight, lost for the seventh time in eight games Saturday in Dallas when James Singleton had a season-high 19 points and 12 rebounds off the bench, as the Mavericks used a 70-point first half to cruise past Sacramento, 116-95.
Beno Udrih had 18 points and seven assists for the Kings while Andres Nocioni made his debut for Sacramento after being acquired from Chicago last week. Nocioni finished with 10 points and seven rebounds, while Will Solomon, who the Kings acquired from Toronto, added seven points.
A number of other players Sacramento acquired via trade before Thursday's deadline, including Ike Diogu, Rashad McCants and Drew Gooden, did not play Saturday.
Francisco Garcia and Spencer Hawes each scored 17 points for the Kings, who defeated Memphis on Friday for their only win since February 1.
Gooden, who came over from Chicago with Nocioni in the deal that sent Brad Miller and John Salmons to the Bulls, may make his debut for Sacramento tonight. The veteran big man has been on the shelf with a groin injury.
Sacramento, which is 8-18 at ARCO Arena, will finish its residency with bouts against Charlotte and the Los Angeles Clippers.
The two teams have split a pair of meetings in New Orleans this season but the Hornets have dropped two straight and 13 of their last 14 trips to Sacramento.
02/23 10:31:55 ET