NBA Preview from The Sports Network
Saturday, January 15th (All times eastern)
Charlotte Bobcats (8-24) at Atlanta Hawks (6-27), 6 p.m.
(Sports Network) - The two worst teams in the Eastern Conference take the court this evening in Atlanta, as the Hawks host the expansion Charlotte Bobcats at Philips Arena.
Atlanta (6-27) currently sits in the cellar of the Southeast Division, 19 games behind first place Miami. Meanwhile, Charlotte (8-24) is just 2 1/2 contests ahead of the Hawks in the standings.
The Hawks, who are 0-6 within the Southeast Division this season, have lost seven of eight, 12 of 13 and 13 of their last 16 games overall. Atlanta's struggles continued on Friday night in the form of a 106-94 loss in Boston to the Celtics.
Former Celtic Antoine Walker had 21 points, a game-high 17 boards and eight assists for the Hawks in the losing effort. Predrag Drobnjak scored 20 in the loss, while Al Harrington added 14 points and 11 rebounds. Josh Smith chipped in 11 points and Jason Collier tacked on 10 in the defeat.
Atlanta hit only 40.4 percent from the field, including just 3-of-14 (.214) from three-point range. The Hawks were particularly poor from the free throw line, hitting just 15-of-29 attempts (.517).
The Hawks, who are beginning a short two-game homestand, are just 4-14 in the friendly confines of Philips Arena this season. Atlanta has dropped seven of its last nine home tilts.
Charlotte is having a tough time of it as of late with nine losses in its last 12 games. The Bobcats slipped up again on Friday night, falling 109-89 to the Memphis Grizzlies at Charlotte Arena.
Emeka Okafor led Charlotte with his 23rd double-double of the season, as he registered 17 points and 12 rebounds. Primoz Brezec, who had 10 points in the first half, finished the game with 15 points and eight rebounds.
Charlotte shot 41.1 percent from the field, but allowed Memphis to nail 48.2 percent of its shots. The Bobcats hurt themselves by committing 18 turnovers, including four by Kareem Rush.
Charlotte, which fell to just 3-20 on the year when it fails to score 100 points or more, has lost five of six at home. The Bobcats have been even worse on the road, winning just once in 16 tries this season. Charlotte's lone road victory came at Houston on December 22.
Charlotte won the first-ever meeting between these teams, 107-92, at Charlotte Arena on Nov. 27. Former Bobcat Eddie House led six Charlotte players in double figures that night with 17 points off the bench. Okafor registered 15 points and 10 rebounds in the contest.
01/15 10:06:40 ET