Game 5 Preview: Sacramento Kings at Portland Trail Blazers

LaMarcus Aldridge looks to go baseline against the Chuck Hayes. (Photo: Steven Chea)

Gametime: 7:00 pm PST

Where: Moda Center, Portland, OR.

Broadcast Information: KHTK Sports 1140 (Radio), NBA TV (Television)

Sacramento Kings Projected Starters (1-3)

PG:Greivis Vasquez
SG: Marcus Thornton
SF: John Salmons
PF: Patrick Patterson
C: DeMarcus Cousins

Portland Trail Blazers Projected Starters (2-2)

PG: Damian Lillard
SG: Wesley Matthews
SF: Nicolas Batum
PF: LaMarcus Aldridge
C: Robin Lopez

What to watch

1. The Kings’ perimeter defense

The Kings will have their hands full against a Trail Blazer team that’s currently shooting at a high clip.  The Blazers are eighth in the league in 3-point percentage and have three players shooting better than 40 percent from beyond the arc in Damian Lillard, Wesley Matthews and Dorell Wright.  Meanwhile, the Kings’ 3-point defense has been spotty to say the least.  The Kings are currently ranked as the third-worst team in the league when it comes to defending beyond the arc.

2. Thomas Robinson

The former first-round pick of the Kings has said numerous times that he’s put Sacramento behind him.  He hasn’t started his career the way he had hoped, but Robinson could be finding a home for himself in Portland.  Robinson has said that he’s a player who likes to annoy the opposition with his defense.  Perhaps he plays the role of instigator tonight against his friend and former teammate, DeMarcus Cousins.

3. The Damian Lillard Show

Lillard has been a revelation early in his NBA career.  And in his second pro season, he’s picked up right where he left off after successfully winning the 2012-13 Rookie of the Year award.  The Blazers starting point guard is averaging 24.3 points and shooting better than 45 percent from the field and from 3-point range through his first four games.  Expect to see plenty of Isaiah Thomas against Lillard tonight, considering Greivis Vasquez doesn’t have the foot-speed to keep up with Blazers star guard.

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About: Jonathan Santiago

Jonathan Santiago serves Cowbell Kingdom as senior editor specializing in writing, podcasting and video production. He also handles the majority of CK’s day-to-day beat coverage of the Kings.