It's a battle of two struggling teams in the Eastern Conference as the Toronto Raptors visit the Charlotte Hornets. It is time to continue our NBA odds series with a Raptors-Hornets prediction, pick, and how-to-watch.

The Raptors have lost four of their last five games, including division losses to the Nets and Knicks. The Raptors are going through an offensive lull, failing to score more than 106 points in three straight games. First-year head coach Darko Rajakovic is worried about the team's lack of attention to detail, which may get sorted out against a team in the Hornets that is just as sloppy. Pascal Siakam is one of the only offensive bright spots this season, averaging 20.5 points per game. However, this is still almost four points less than last season's average and his lowest per-game total since 2018-19. Scottie Barnes may finally be in his breakout season, averaging 19.2 points, 9.1 rebounds, and 5.4 assists per game. These are all career highs.

The Hornets are headed on the same trajectory as the Raptors, losing four of their last five games. Offense hasn't necessarily been the issue for the Hornets, as they are still scoring at an above-average clip. However, issues at the defensive end and fundamentally have cratered their season. The absence of Mark Williams on Wednesday night was a problem for the Hornets, as he missed his first game of the year with a back contusion. The Bulls had 21 offensive rebounds and beat the Hornets 57-42 in rebounds overall. Gordon Hayward has stepped up in LaMelo Ball's absence, scoring a season-high 27 points on Wednesday.

Here are the NBA odds, courtesy of FanDuel. 

NBA Odds: Raptors-Hornets Odds

Toronto Raptors: -5.5 (-108)

Charlotte Hornets: +5.5 (-112)

Over: 223 (-110)

Under: 223 (-110)

How to Watch Raptors vs. Hornets

Time: 7 PM ET/4 PM PT

TV: Bally Sports Southeast

Stream: FuboTV (Click for free trial)

Why The Raptors Could Cover The Spread

The Raptors' offense has hit a lull, but they have played five of the top-20 defenses in the league over their last five games. Three of those games have included the Knicks(3rd-best defense), Cavaliers(7th), and Heat(11th). Siakam has still been humming along, scoring 30 points in the Heat loss on Wednesday night. He has over 20 points in three consecutive games and leads the team in points and assists per game. He has also performed well against the Hornets in his career, averaging 30 points per game against them last season.

The Hornets are a dream matchup for a team looking to get their offense back on track. They have given up at least 115 points in four of their last five games and an average of 121.6 per game, making them 26th in the league. Their offense averages 113.1 points per game, putting them in the middle of the NBA. However, the absence of LaMelo Ball for another couple of games deals a significant hit to their offensive output.

Why The Hornets Could Cover The Spread

There isn't much reason to believe in the Hornets without LaMelo Ball. Consider that the Hornets may also be without Mark Williams for the second straight game, and it could be an ugly night. However, the Raptors are playing just as poorly over their past five games. Most of our analysis of this game is that the Raptors have played some of the best defensive teams in the league, and they will get their offense back on track against the lowly Hornets. However, if you believe that the Raptors are in too much of a mess now to right the ship, there's a good chance that the Hornets will score enough points to cover this spread or even win outright.

The Raptors will likely need to score more than 110-115 points to cover this spread. If you don't think they can do better than their past five games and reach that number, you should take the Hornets.

Final Raptors-Hornets Prediction & Pick

There's a chance for the Raptors' offense to bounce back in this matchup against the Hornets. Charlotte has been struggling to defend, allowing 121.6 points per game. The Raptors are a different team this year, with Rajakovic replacing Nick Nurse, but the team had plenty of success against the Hornets last season. They were 4-0 and scored more than 120 points in each game. If this game follows the same script, and the Raptors can get more than 120 points to match the Hornets' average points allowed this season, the Hornets won't need to reach their average of 113.8 points per game to cover the total. This total is likely lower with the Raptors' offensive struggles in mind, but recent games against five of the top-20 defensive teams in the league are the reason for those struggles. The Raptors get a much easier matchup against the Hornets.

With the Raptors' easier matchup in mind, this is an opportunity to take them to cover the spread. The Hornets are a mess at the moment, failing to take care of the basketball and missing a lot of defensive assignments. The team has been struggling without the services of LaMelo Ball, who isn't slated to return until mid-December. Williams' back contusion is also something to monitor, as even if he plays, he probably won't be 100%. Both teams may end up on the outside looking in of the playoff race this season, but this matchup is a good spot for the Raptors to get back on track.

Final Raptors-Hornets Prediction & Pick: Over 223 (-110) and Raptors -5.5 (-108)