Game 45 Preview: Sacramento Kings at Denver Nuggets
Gametime: 6:00 pm PT
Where: Denver, CO.
The book on the Nuggets: After a road heavy start to the season, the Nuggets have taken advantage of the luxury of playing at home. In the new year, they’ve played nine home games and posted a 7-2 record. Overall this season, they’re 16-3 at the Pepsi Center.
Did you know? The Kings have lost to the Nuggets six-straight times. In their last four meetings, the Kings have averaged just 97.25 points per game while allowing the Nuggets to score 118.5 points per contest.
Sacramento Kings Probable Starters (16-28)
Denver Nuggets Probable Starters (26-18)
- Points Per Game: 97
- Offensive Rating: 101.3
- Opponents Points Per Game: 102.3
- Defensive Rating: 108.2
- Pace: 94.81
- Points Per Game: 103.2
- Offensive Rating: 105.3
- Opponents Points Per Game: 99.7
- Defensive Rating: 102.6
- Pace: 97.15
Three questions to ponder
1. Will the Kings allow the Nuggets to dominate in the paint?
When these two teams last met, the Nuggets obliterated the Kings inside the paint. In a 122-97 victory in Sacramento, Denver scored 64 points in the paint to the Kings’ 38. That was not an outlier performance either. Sacramento has been decimated by the Nuggets’ prowess inside before when they allowed Denver to set an NBA record 92 points in the paint on Jan. 25, 2012.
2. Will the Kings let another relative unknown go off?
The Kings have occasionally let players who aren’t tops on the scouting report slip through the cracks. They did it a couple weeks ago when Wayne Ellington went off from long-range for the Memphis Grizzlies. And they did it in their last match-up against Denver when they let Jordan Hamilton play some of his best basketball as a pro. The second-year wing scored 15 points on 6-of-11 shooting in his last outing against Sacramento.
3. Which Kings players draws the short-end of the straw in Keith Smart‘s rotation?
After playing sparingly in the Kings’ previous four games, Jimmer Fredette played extended minutes yesterday against the Oklahoma City Thunder. His playing time came at the expense of Aaron Brooks, who earned his second DNP – Coach’s Decision of the season. Brooks wasn’t the only veteran to remain glued to the bench during last night’s game. Chuck Hayes, who’s seen his playing time diminish drastically over the last month, earned his first DNP – CD this year. Francisco Garcia, who had started several games in Tyreke Evans‘ absence, also didn’t play last night.
Statistical support provided by NBA.com.
Tags Aaron BrooksAndre IguodalaDanilo GallinariDeMarcus CousinsDenver NuggetsGeorge KarlJason ThompsonJimmer FredetteJohn SalmonsKeith SmartKenneth FariedKosta KoufosThomas RobinsonTravis OutlawTy LawsonTyreke Evans