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- Kemba Walker has been a monster for the Bobcats in two games (one win) against Orlando this season, scoring 57 points on 53 percent shooting to go with 10 rebounds and 12 assists. ”When he’s lively defensively and gets his hands on balls, takes charges and stuff like that, he’s a different player offensively,” noted Charlotte coach Mike Dunlap.
- Byron Mullens, who missed the Bobcats’ 106-100 victory over the Magic on Jan. 18 with a left ankle sprain, averaged 20 points and nine rebounds in the four games before the All-Star break.
- With the NBA trade deadline just two days away, Dunlap and Magic coach Jacque Vaughn have opposite approaches to dealing with trade rumors. Dunlap likes to have one-on-one discussions with players involved in the rumors. Vaughn, whose J.J. Redick is high on the list of players most rumored to be headed elsewhere, ignores the rumors. “When something happens, my general manager (Rob Hennigan) will call me,” Vaughn said. “Otherwise, as I tell my players: ‘When Thursday comes and the deadline comes to pass, something will happen or it won’t.’ It’s that simple. You can’t control it.”
- Neither team has won consecutive games in two months. The Magic last did it on Dec. 17-19. The Bobcats last did it on Nov. 19-21.
- Bobcats lineup: Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, Mullens, Bismack Biyombo, Gerald Henderson, Walker (this lineup is 1-7).
- Magic lineup: Maurice Harkless, Andrew Nicholson, Nikola Vucevic, Arron Afflalo, Jameeer Nelson (this lineup is 1-3).
– Dick Scanlon