Indiana Pacers vs Charlotte Hornets: Lineups, preview & prediction 2/2/18

Friday night’s game between the Indiana Pacers and Charlotte Hornets may be an audition for Kemba Walker as the point guard remains part of rumors and trade talks.

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(Photo credit: Keith Allison)

Kemba Walker is averaging 22.4 points and 5.8 assists and is arguably the highest-profile name included in trade talks ahead of the February 8 deadline. There have been published reports Hornets team president Michael Jordan rejected an offer for Walker and Michael Kidd-Gilchrist from the Detroit Pistons that would have landed forward Tobias Harris and a first-round draft pick.

The Pacers serving as a potential landing spot for Walker would create a high-scoring backcourt with All-Star Victor Oladipo, but there was no action between the teams’ front offices earlier this week in Indiana, where Charlotte (21-29) absorbed a 105-96 loss Monday night.

The Hornets capped their three-game road swing on a positive note Wednesday night, defeating Atlanta 123-110. Walker hit a career-high nine 3-pointers on 13 attempts and finished with 38 points as Charlotte made a season-best 17 3-pointers while shooting 53.1 percent from beyond the arc.

Indiana (29-23) swept their three-game home stand after posting a 105-101 victory over Memphis on Wednesday night. Bojan Bogdanovic scored 21 points to lead seven players in double figures and Myles Turner added 15 and 11 rebounds in his return to the starting lineup as Indiana scored 24 points in transition and shot 52.9 percent.

Turner has averaged 13.7 points and 6.0 rebounds in three games after missing nine games with a sore elbow as his minutes have been ramped up with each contest. Wednesday night’s double-double was his first since November 29 and his fourth of the season. Domantas Sabonis, who returned to his customary role off the bench, had ten points and seven rebounds. 

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