Hornets, 76ers to Get Offenses Rolling from the Start

hornets sixers

Jordan Sharp

Monday, March 19, 2018 2:30 PM GMT

Monday, Mar. 19, 2018 2:30 PM GMT

Charlotte will be without one of its best players tonight in Philadelphia, but that doesn't mean scoring will be down. That's why the total might be the smartest play with your NBA picks.

Monday NBA: Hornets vs. 76ersFree NBA Pick: Over 114 1HBest Line Offered: 5Dimes

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Charlotte's Nicolas Batum has a sore Achilles, and when you’re almost out of the playoff race in a down Eastern Conference, the injury might have been a reality check for this club.

The Hornets are going to need to shut down some of their banged-up veterans. While there are new rules against resting healthy players, the Hornets would be wise to think about figuring out what injuries they are going to label to Dwight Howard and Kemba Walker soon.

Regardless of that, they likely will be without Batum tonight in Philadelphia and that hurts Charlotte on both ends of the court. It hurts more on offense, but the good news is the Hornets have been one of the better offensive teams in the NBA since the All-Star break.

That holds true in the first half of their games, too. The Hornets and 76ers rank in the top eight in first-half offense after the break, and that should mean a higher-scoring first half tonight, so take note of the first-half total on the NBA odds board.

Take a look at the highlights from their last meeting, when Philadelphia led 71-59 at halftime:

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Both teams were trying to run, but even in their half-court sets, the offense typically came with 10 or more seconds on the shot clock. That should continue tonight. I doubt Charlotte will give up 71 first-half points again, but each team could be at or above 60 at intermission.

I see the Hornets putting up some points, even without Batum. If the pace is played fast again, we should have no issues cashing the first-half "over" with our NBA picks.

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