Game 41 Preview: Sac Kings at Trail Blazers

Sacramento_Kings_Damian_Lillard


Game time: 7:00 p.m. PDT

Where: Moda Center, Portland, OR.

Broadcast Information: KHTK Sports 1140 (Radio), Comcast SportsNet California (Local Television)


Sacramento Kings Probable Starters (16-24)

PG: Darren Collison
SG: Ben McLemore
SF: Rudy Gay
PF: Jason Thompson
C: DeMarcus Cousins

Portland Trail Blazers Probable Starters (30-11)

PG: Damian Lillard
SG: Wesley Matthews
SF: Nicolas Batum
PF: LaMarcus Aldridge
C: Chris Kaman


Three things to ponder

1. Turnovers

In the Kings’ win versus the Trail Blazers on October 31, Sacramento limited their turnovers to 10. The players should know by now there’s a direct correlation to their success and the quality of ball control. DeMarcus Cousins, who leads the Kings with 4.3 turnovers per game, acknowledges this in the locker room.

2. Inside presence

Portland is without active, burly pivot Robin Lopez (hand), but veteran Chris Kaman has filled in nicely. The 32-year-old has produced 8.9 points and 8.9 rebounds per match in Lopez’s absence, and is even providing a little rim protection (1.4 blocks per game). Sacramento can’t sleep on Kaman, who averages 13.3 points and 9.5 rebounds in his career versus the Kings. For the road team, Jason Thompson, who recorded his first 20-20 game ever on Saturday, looks to keep the momentum going.

3. Scoring by any means

The Trail Blazers feature a suffocating defense, one which ranks second in the NBA in opponent field goal percentage (43.0) and first in opponent 3-point percentage (29.7). The Kings shot only 42 percent from the floor in their October win, but they made 31-of-35 free throws, so aggression is key.

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About: Rui Thomas

Rui Thomas is a writer and reporter for Cowbell Kingdom. He previously covered the Sacramento Kings and the NBA for Sports Out West. He is published by Sports Illustrated’s Truth and Rumors and Yahoo Sports NFL among others.