Hornets Return to Preseason Action to Battle Bulls

By Sam Perley

The fourth outing of the preseason slate gets underway for the Hornets tonight as they’ll play host to the visiting Chicago Bulls starting at 7 p.m. in Charlotte.  

It’s been six days since the Hornets last took the court, which culminated in an impressive 122-113 comeback win over the Miami Heat. Charlotte trailed by 14 points in the first half, so it’s no surprise Coach Borrego is pushing his team to start games with more intensity and focus.  

Right now, rebounding is one of the more problematic areas for the Hornets and to be expected following the offseason trade of Dwight Howard. In their last two games, the Hornets have been outrebounded by a cumulative total of 101-82 and 25-5 in offensive boards.  

Fourteen-year veteran Marvin Williams is coming off a solid outing against the Heat in which he totaled 12 points, three rebounds, a block and a steal in 18 minutes. The seasoned NBAer scored all his points via a 4-of-5 clip from downtown, after shooting 1-of-5 in his other exhibition appearance on Sept. 28.  

With their Finnish sharpshooter, Lauri Markkanen sidelined (elbow), look for the Bulls to utilize newcomer and Chicago native, Jabari Parker more at power forward. With both players relatively undersized at the four-spot, the matchup between the defensive-minded Williams and the offense-first Parker should be an intriguing and potentially pivotal one.     

Fun Fact– Malik Monk and Bulls forward Bobby Portis are both alumni of the same AAU program, Arkansas Wings Elite. Each player was also named Mr. Basketball of Arkansas as a high schooler as well (Monk – 2016; Portis – 2013).