NBA Preview from The Sports Network
Monday, March 28th (All times eastern)
Cleveland Cavaliers (35-32) at New Orleans Hornets (16-53), 8 p.m.
(Sports Network) - The Cleveland Cavaliers try to snap a two-game losing streak tonight when they visit the Hornets at New Orleans Arena.
Cleveland enters Monday's action sixth in the Eastern Conference playoff race -- 1 1/2 games behind fifth-place Chicago and one up on Philadelphia and Indiana, which are tied for seventh.
The Cavs, who have lost their last 11 road games, have dropped five of their last six overall, including Saturday's 117-86 pounding in Dallas. Michael Finley scored 26 points to lead the Mavericks, hitting all eight of his three- point attempts in the process.
LeBron James led the way for Cleveland with 19 points. Drew Gooden tallied 16 points and Anderson Varejao contributed 14 off the bench for the Cavaliers, who fell to 1-2 under interim coach Brendan Malone, who took over for the fired Paul Silas last Monday.
James suffered a sprained left ankle in the first quarter of Saturday's game, but he is expected to play this evening.
Cleveland will host the Los Angeles Clippers on Tuesday.
New Orleans, meanwhile, hopes to build a winning streak after halting a four- game slide with Saturday's 96-85 victory at Memphis. It was only the Hornets' fifth win in 13 games this month.
J.R. Smith racked up a career-high 33 points to lead the way Saturday. P.J. Brown posted 19 points and 14 rebounds to help the Hornets to only their fifth win in 35 games away from home this season. Jamaal Magloire added 10 points and pulled down 13 boards in the triumph.
Smith finished 13-of-18 from the field, including 6-of-9 from three-point range, for New Orleans, which finally won a game against a Southwest Division foe this season. The Hornets entered with an 0-14 mark against divisional opponents and were in danger of becoming the first team in NBA history to finish a season winless in division play.
The Hornets will visit Houston on Friday.
Cleveland defeated New Orleans, 100-91, at Gund Arena on December 26 and has won four consecutive meetings.
The Cavs snapped a 10-game road losing streak in the series with a victory last March 5 in New Orleans.
03/28 10:08:06 ET