Kings’ Speech: Game 9 vs. Atlanta Hawks
At 2-6, the Sacramento Kings welcome the Atlanta Hawks to Sleep Train Arena tonight. The Hawks come into this evening’s match-up at 3-4 after losing Wednesday night to the Golden State Warriors.
The Hawks are a different team now that Joe Johnson has moved on to Brooklyn. However, Kings head coach Keith Smart noted yesterday that core players Josh Smith, Al Horford and Jeff Teague are making up for Johnson’s departure.
It’s a different makeup but they’re still going to go through some of their main players. Obviously Josh Smith is going to be able to make plays. He’s an aggressive player, going to attack the rim, rebound, block shots of course. Teague is a frightening young player, who can get to the basket and make plays. Depending on what happens with Horford if he plays tomorrow, he’s a good low post guy and (I’ve) been really impressed with how he spots up in his area to make his little jump shots.
You know (they’re a) rebounding team. That team presents a lot of problems because they got the experience of playing (in the playoffs). They understand how to play on the road and you know which team comes in and (is) aggressive tomorrow will have the upper-hand tomorrow.
Horford missed the Hawks’ last game after catching a stomach virus. If the Hawks big man returns, he’ll find himself matched up against DeMarcus Cousins, who comes back to the Kings’ lineup after missing two games to suspension. Cousins believes the key for him in the match-up is to be more active than the Hawks’ anchor big.
Al Horford’s a tough opponent. (He’s a) very active big man. (He) plays hard, so it should be fun.
Tonight’s game tips off at 7 pm at Sleep Train Arena. For continue pre and post-game coverage, be sure to follow Cowbell Kingdom throughout the day.