NBA Preview from The Sports Network
Wednesday, November 7th (All times eastern)
Philadelphia 76ers (1-2) at New Orleans Hornets (2-1), 8 p.m.
(Sports Network) - The New Orleans Hornets will try to continue their winning ways tonight when they host the Philadelphia 76ers, who begin a three-game road trip.
The Hornets have won two in a row, including a nice road victory over the Chicago Bulls on Saturday. They bested the Bulls by seven in the Windy City and did it without the services of the No. 1 overall pick in the draft, Anthony Davis, who was out with a concussion.
"Our bigs did a great job for us, especially stepping in with Anthony out. He is a big part of our team," said head coach Monty Williams.
Robin Lopez netted 16 points against the Bulls, while Ryan Anderson, who started in Davis' absence, had a double-double with 12 points and 13 rebounds. One of the night's biggest revelations was Jason Smith, who came off the bench with 16 points in under 16 minutes of game action.
"Jason played good defense and was driving to the basket well," said Williams.
Davis is expected to be back tonight, but perhaps the best player in a Hornets uniform early on has been point guard Greivis Vasquez. After his floater with less than two seconds left on the clock beat the Utah Jazz on Friday, he had 18 points and six assists against the Bulls.
Vasquez will have a tough matchup tonight against Jrue Holiday, who leads the 76ers in scoring (19.3 ppg), assists (8.7) and 3-point shooting (53 percent).
But the Sixers are treading water until center Andrew Bynum, who was acquired in this summer's blockbuster trade, can return to the court. He's missed every game this season with knee problems and his return date is unknown.
The Sixers' offense has struggled badly while he's been on the bench in street clothes.
Through three games, Philadelphia is averaging 85.3 ppg and has yet to crack the 90-point mark. Only three players are putting up double-digit points per game and shooting guard Jason Richardson is questionable with a left ankle sprain.
Head coach Doug Collins is trying to put something together, but has already used two starting lineups in three games and the lineup will probably change again as Kwame Brown, who started at center Monday night against the New York Knicks, hurt his calf.
"We're going to continue to watch tape and teach and work and try to do all of those things," said Collins. "And hopefully start seeing some teams that aren't playing as well as the Knicks."
The Sixers lost both games in a home-and-home convincingly against the Knicks.
Philadelphia has won four of the last five against the Hornets dating back to the 2009-10 season. The Sixers also have taken two of the last three in New Orleans.
11/07 10:56:37 ET