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Bobcats @ Rockets 3-on-3 Preview

Who: Houston Rockets vs Charlotte Bobcats

What: NBA Basketball – Rockets Home Game

When: 8:00 PM ET

Where: Live at Toyota Center, Houston, TX.

The Matchup:

Record Offensive
Houston 23-20 103.3 (11) 103.1 (18) 93.6 (12)
Charlotte 6-34 93.6 (30) 107.9 (28) 92.5 (19)

Previous Meetings:
20120110 – 82-70 – RecapBoxscore

Houston: Kyle Lowry (out), Kevin Martin (day-to-day), Jordan Hill (day-to-day)
Charlotte: Corey Maggette (game time decision), Eduardo Najera (game time decision)

Starting Lineups

Rockets Bobcats
PG Goran Dragic D.J. Augustin
SG Kevin Martin Gerald Henderson
SF Chandler Parsons Corey Maggette
PF Luis Scola Tyrus Thomas
C Samuel Dalembert Bismack Biyombo
6th Man Patrick Patterson Kemba Walker

3-on-3 TrueHoop NetworkQCH panel takes a look at tonight’s matchup that features a Rockets team that is a little banged up with injuries, but one that is also coming off a victory at Oklahoma City last night and a Bobcats team that looks to win consecutive games for the first time all season.

1- BIYOMBO. The Biyombo watch continues for many around the league and especially Bobcats fans. Tonight, the rookie will go up against 7-footer Samuel Dalembert, who is averaging 12.6 PPG and 9.0 RPG in his last five contests. Biyombo has played to the tune of 8.2 PPG and 10 RPG in his last five. Will Dalembert give the 19-year old some problems tonight?

Spencer Percy: Dalembert’s size may give Biyombo some problems, especially from an offensive standpoint. I still see Biyombo flirting with another double-double simply because of his consistent energy and effort.

Jenn Kimbal: Although Biyombo tends to vacillate between looking like a seasoned veteran and looking like a deer in headlights, he does seem to rise to a challenge.  Expect Biyombo to hold his own against Dalembert tonight.

Bryan Wendland: Dalembert certainly can give Biyombo problems, but the rookie looked so good on both ends of the floor against New Orleans that I have to predict another 10 point 10 rebound 2-4 block game for him.

2- INJURIES. The Rockets are without starting PG Kyle Lowry (bacterial infection) for 2-4 weeks and Kevin Martin (strained right shoulder), who didn’t play last night, is questionable tonight. However, the Rockets were able to take down the Western Conference leading Thunder in OKC last night, so throw these injuries out the door or will they benefit the Bobcats?

Spencer: Throw the injuries out. 1) They beat the Thunder on the road. 2) Houston gets such good production from player’s such as Courtney Lee, Chandler Parsons, Chase Budinger and Patrick Patterson that you could throw any of those guys into their starting lineup on a given night and not suffer to much of a drop off in production. The Rockets are a great example of a team in this league that doesn’t have an all-star (Lowry & Scola- arguably), but has great depth that win them a lot of games.

Jenn: Missing arguably their two best players, the Rockets will definitely be at a disadvantage.  However, even such a handicap cannot level the playing field between these two teams.  Anticipate strong performances from Lee and Parsons, sealing a Rockets win tonight.

Bryan: The injuries have to be taken into consideration, but even without Lowry and potentially Martin, Houston is still better than Charlotte. If Martin doesn’t play, those injuries certainly could play into the final score tonight.

3- PREDICTION. The Rockets rank no worse than 17th in any team stats category of note (OFF EFF, DEF EFF, REBR, PACE, & EFF FG%), while the Bobcats rank no higher than 17th in any of those categories and are dead last in three of the five categories. Just knowing this- Charlotte has no chance to win tonight, right?

Spencer: That’s right. The Bobcats have shot the ball much better in their past 3 games, but that won’t cut it against this Rockets team that does everything on the floor at an average rate at the worst. Maggette being doubtful for this game sure doesn’t help the cause either. Rockets blow past Bobcats.

Jenn: I wouldn’t say the Bobcats have no chance but, if I were a betting man, I wouldn’t take the Bobcats even with the 8 point Vegas spread.

Bryan: Charlotte has a shot, but it would have to play its best game of the year to get the win. The Bobcats are on the road, against a superior opponent with trade rumors hanging over Augustin’s head. But if Houston can knock off the Thunder on the road, Charlotte at least has a chance to do the same to the Rockets.