Key Matchup vs. Milwaukee Bucks: Nicolas Batum vs. Khris Middleton
By Sam Perley, hornets.com
The last road trip of the season for the Charlotte Hornets is set to kick off on Monday night as they take on the Milwaukee Bucks for the third and final time this year. With leading-scorer Kemba Walker doubtful to play (knee), Charlotte will turn to the red-hot Nicolas Batum to lead the way against Milwaukee. The Frenchman is averaging 27.5 points on 47.2 percent shooting, 5.5 rebounds and 5.0 assists in his last two outings and is also coming off a season-high-tying 31-point performance in the team’s 121-114 home loss to Boston on April 8.
Batum will likely be tasked with guarding Milwaukee’s Khris Middleton, who is rounding into form for the playoff-bound Bucks after missing the first three months of the season with a torn hamstring he suffered in September. A fifth-year veteran from Texas A&M, Middleton is putting up 16.0 points on 45.5 percent shooting (41.1 percent from three-point range), 4.5 rebounds, 3.3 assists and 1.6 steals in 22 appearances since the start of March.
Keeping Middleton and the rest of the Milwaukee wings contained on the perimeter will be imperative for the Charlotte Hornets as they look to snap a three-game losing streak on Monday night against the Bucks at the Bradley Center.
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