Golden State (7-20) at New Orleans (12-14)

Sunny Currently: New Orleans, LA, US
Temp: 93° F
  • Game info: 8:00 pm EST Wed Dec 23, 2009
Preview | Box Score | Recap

For all their struggles on the road, the New Orleans Hornets remain within striking distance of a winning record thanks to their strong play at home.

The Golden State Warriors know how tough the Hornets can be on their own floor, no matter where it’s located.

The Hornets will try to move a step closer to .500 by winning for the ninth time in 10 home games Wednesday night in their first meeting this season with the struggling Warriors.

New Orleans (12-14) is 10-3 at home, but a miserable 2-11 on the road after Sunday’s 98-92 loss in Toronto. The Hornets rallied within two late in the fourth quarter but were held without a point for the final 1:05, leaving star guard Chris Paul(notes) frustrated.

“This was a winnable game for us,” said Paul, who shot 3 of 13 and finished with 10 points - his fewest in eight games since returning from an ankle injury. “We just didn’t come out with any type of intensity. Same story, different night. We didn’t defend, all that same stuff just keeps on happening.”

The Hornets have played much better defense at home, limiting opponents to 96.8 points per game compared with 105.5 on the road.

They’d appear to have a good chance to continue their home success against Golden State (7-20), which is 6-19 all-time in road games versus the Hornets in New Orleans, Charlotte and Oklahoma City.

The Warriors enter Wednesday’s game having dropped a season-high six straight and 10 of 11 this month, including Tuesday night’s 121-108 defeat in Memphis to fall to 3-13 away from home. It was the seventh time this season that Golden State’s league-worst defense (111.9 points per game) allowed an opponent to score at least 120.

“It is what it is,” said Monta Ellis(notes), who had 23 points but got whistled for four first-half fouls. “It’s nothing I have to change. My play just wasn’t there.”

Corey Maggette(notes) led the Warriors with 25 points in his fifth consecutive 20-point effort. Maggette missed the last matchup between these teams - a 111-103 home win for Golden State on April 3 - due to a head injury.

Health is also a problem now for the Warriors, who may be limited to an eight-man rotation for a third straight game. Raja Bell(notes), Andris Biedrins(notes), Mikki Moore(notes) and Ronny Turiaf(notes) are among the ailing.

Paul matched a career high with 43 points for New Orleans in the April matchup. He’s averaging 23.6 in 13 career games versus Golden State.

Despite their struggles on the road against the Hornets, the Warriors have taken six of the last 10 overall meetings in this series.

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Wednesday, Dec 23