NBA Basketball
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Final 1 2 3 4 Tot
Charlotte 24 22 31 17 94
Utah 28 27 29 22 106
6:00 PM PT7:00 PM MT8:00 PM CT9:00 PM ET2:00 GMT10:00 7:00 PM MST9:00 PM EST6:00 UAE (+1)03:0021:00 ET8:00 PM CTNaN:� , February 9, 2018
Vivint Smart Home Arena, Salt Lake City, Utah  Attendance: 18,306

Retooled Jazz look to stay hot when hosting Hornets

According to STATS
According to STATS

Charlotte Hornets at Utah Jazz

  1. The Hornets defeated the Jazz 99-88 in Charlotte on January 12. But Utah has won its last 10 home contests in this series.
  2. The Hornets (0-16) are one of four teams (Hou, NY, Orl) who are winless this season when scoring 98 or fewer points in a game.
  3. The Jazz have won their last seven games. The last time they had a longer win streak in a single season was when they took nine in a row, January 20-February 9, 2010.
  4. Kemba Walker (0-5) is still looking for his first road win against the Jazz. Walker has struggled in these contests, averaging 12.8 points and 4.2 assists while shooting just 36.4 percent from the field. The newly minted All-Star is coming off a 40-point performance in Thursday's overtime loss to Portland.
  5. Ricky Rubio is averaging 24.3 points and 8.0 assists per game while shooting 55.2 (32/58) percent from the field in February. These are all significant increases from his numbers through games of January 31 (11.4 PPG, 5.0 APG & 39.3 FG%).
  6. Donovan Mitchell had 35 points in Utah's January 12 loss to the Hornets. That was one of the rookie's six 30+ point performances this season. However, after posting 40 points in his opening game of February, he has a total of just 11 points in his last two contests.

SALT LAKE CITY -- Can Utah remain the NBA's hottest team amid a roster shakeup?

That's the question facing the surging Jazz heading into Friday's clash with the Charlotte Hornets after they made some moves before Thursday's NBA trade deadline. As part of a three-team deal, Utah dealt Rodney Hood to Cleveland and sent Joe Johnson to Sacramento. The Jazz brought back Jae Crowder and Derrick Rose from the Cavaliers.

Hood averaged career highs in points per game (16.8) and field goal percentage (42.4) before the trade. The fourth-year guard also struggled with injuries, though, missing 15 games and ended up relegated to the bench with the emergence of Donovan Mitchell.

Utah's offense isn't likely to skip a beat amid Hood's departure. The Jazz (26-28) have won seven straight games behind the strength of a resurgence from Ricky Rubio. Rubio is averaging 22.1 points, 7.7 assists and is shooting 53.8 percent during that stretch.

"I'm feeling good," Rubio said on the Jazz website after Wednesday's 92-88 victory over Memphis. "I worked hard for this moment. I had a tough time adjusting to a new team. A lot of players in and out, but I think finally I got it to click and I'm feeling good."

Rose will likely be released by the Jazz in the days ahead. Crowder, on the other hand, is a player Utah has wanted for a long time.

The Jazz first tried to acquire Crowder from Boston over the summer as part of a proposed sign-and-trade deal involving then free agent Gordon Hayward. He brings a tantalizing skill set that fits the Jazz system. The 6-foot-6 forward is a solid passer and wing defender and also a capable outside shooter.

Over his last two seasons with the Celtics, Crowder appeared in 145 games and averaged 14.1 points and 5.4 rebounds over that stretch. He can play and guard three positions, which could help the Jazz in their efforts to refocus the team around Rudy Gobert and Mitchell.

"Jae is someone that we've long admired," Jazz GM Dennis Lindsey told the Salt Lake Tribune. "He's really versatile defensively. Can play really two through four. His physicality, with his build, is quite obvious."

Charlotte wasn't active at the NBA trade deadline like some outside observers expected. Rumored trade scenarios centered on the Hornets parting ways with Kemba Walker. None of those deals that would ship Walker elsewhere materialized.

The Hornets (23-31) will stick with what they have as they play their seventh road game in two weeks. Charlotte comes to Salt Lake City with three wins in its last five games.

Walker has played a critical role for the Hornets on the road over the past two weeks. He is averaging 28.2 points and 4.5 assists in the team's last six road games. Walker scored at least 30 points in four of those contests.

Instead of trade news, Walker learned Thursday that he will play in the NBA All-Star game for a second straight season. He was named as an injury replacement for New York center Kristaps Porzingis after Porzingis suffered a season-ending ACL tear in his left knee.

"You never know if you'll make it back," Walker told the Charlotte Observer before Thursday's 109-103 overtime loss at Portland. "I'm very fortunate to be back. Two times? Back-to-back? It seems very surreal. I know I'm here because of an injury to another guy, but being that next guy up is a great feeling."

Charlotte defeated Utah 99-88 on Jan. 12 in the first meeting this season. The Hornets held the Jazz to 16 fourth quarter points and pulled away late behind 22 points from Walker and 16 from Frank Kaminsky.

Updated February 9, 2018

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