Dirk Nowitzki rises for the jumper against the Kings. (Photo: Steven Chea)

Gametime: 7:00 pm PT

Where: Sleep Train Arena, Sacramento, CA.

Broadcast Information: TV – Comcast SportsNet, Radio – CBS Sports 1140

For Mavs perspective, visit TrueHoop Network Affiliate The Two Man Game.

The book on the Mavs:  After losing in Denver last night, the Mavs have an even steeper hill to climb if they hope to make the playoffs.  Dallas now stands three games back of the Lakers for the eighth and final playoff spot in the west.  The Jazz also stand in their way for a postseason birth.  Utah is two-and-a-half games ahead of Dallas for the ninth seed.

Did you know?  The Mavs recently signed guard Josh Akognon to their roster.  The Fullerton product played for the Kings’ summer league team in Las Vegas.

Sacramento Kings Probable Starters (27-48)

PG: Isaiah Thomas
SG: Tyreke Evans
SF: John Salmons
PF: Jason Thompson
C: DeMarcus Cousins

Dallas Mavericks Probable Starters (36-39)

PG: Mike James
SG: O.J. Mayo
SF: Shawn Marion
PF: Dirk Nowitzki

C: Chris Kaman

Stats

Kings

  • Points Per Game: 100
  • Offensive Rating: 103.0
  • Opponents Points Per Game: 103.9
  • Defensive Rating: 108.4
  • Pace: 96.05

Mavs

  • Points Per Game: 101
  • Offensive Rating: 103.3
  • Opponents Points Per Game: 100.6
  • Defensive Rating: 104.1
  • Pace: 96.43

Three questions to ponder

1.  Can Jason Thompson match his output from Wednesday’s game against the Rockets?

Thompson recorded his 11th double double of the season, finishing with 17 points and a season-high 15 rebounds in the loss to Houston.  In the past, Thompson has struggled against stretch fours like Dirk Nowitzki.  How Thompson fares defensively could factor into his playing time today.

2.  Will Vince Carter get hot from beyond the arc?

The last time the Kings faced off against the Mavs, Carter was making history.  Finishing with 26 points in victory, the 36-year-old former All-Star surpassed Larry Bird on the NBA’s all-time scoring list.  He also lit the Kings up from deep, making 6-of-9 attempts from 3-point range.  If the Kings aren’t careful, the veteran swingman might be primed for an encore.

3.  Which team wins the  first half?

The Kings came out lethargic to start Wednesday’s game against the Rockets.  They trailed by double figures during stretches of the first period in what ended up being a 10-point loss.  Coming out with the right energy has been an indicator of success for the Kings this year.  The Kings are 22-8 this season in games they lead at halftime.

Statistical support provided by NBA.com.