I was thinking about the lose 4, win 4 groove the Kings have fallen into lately, when I took a look at the upcoming schedule the Kings are facing. Minnesota twice in one week; Washington a team with no identity, despite an abundance of personalities; and a thrashed Portland team suffering from injuries and even-with-injuries-we-have-way-too-much-talent-to-be-playing-this-badly-itis.
Yes, I know Kevin Love is back, but until either the T-Wolves start winning some games, or the Kings start crumbling in the face of tree-trunk rebounding machines again, I just have to give these games to the Kings. While in years past the team has made players like Chris Kaman and Joel Pryzbilla look like Dwight Howard, it is obvious that Thompson, Greene, Evans, and the Argentinian Devil have shown that they are serious about bringing some tenacity back to the team. Now if only they could teach Hawes how to snarl.
I am convinced that Washington is an inferior team to the scrappy Kings, so I’m calling this one a W. Enough said. Kings by 5, Evans owns Arenas, but Beno can’t stay in front of Earl Boykins.
Portland however, is a different story. Injuries galore, and talent still coming out their ears. Although the Kings have made a habit of hanging around in games against good teams, they have just not been able to pull off their first big upset. I think this is their first opportunity. Despite being a tough team to beat at home, Portland’s chemistry is definitely in flux. If the Kings can hang around into the fourth, maybe they can squeak one out. My prediction, Kings by 2, Casspi with the winning shot.
Ok so, best case scenario puts the Kings at 13 and 12, worst case 12 and 13.
Next comes the first big Evans/Jennings matchup. I can’t wait for this game. Defenses have finally figured out how to defend Jennings, and their team has plummeted because of it. I anticipate nothing less from the Kings. With all the ROY talk, this game has the opportunity to massively increase the publicity one of these break out stars, and I expect Evans to come out fired up.
A few notes on the rest of December:
Let’s hope Chicago doesn’t fire Vinny before the 21st. I want the Kings to face the helpless “Lets Blame it all on Salmons, and Not on Our Porous Defense” Bulls, rather than the “Reenergized by a Coaching Change” team I am afraid they will become. They have skills; let’s just hope they don’t remember what it means to play as a team until the 22nd.
So that’s really 6 winnable games. Portland is iffy, but if I have learned anything from seasonal daytime television, I have learned that anything can happen at Christmas, right?
Next up are three big losses to Cleveland, the Lakers, and Denver. By big, I don’t mean blowouts, I just think these tough games will force the team back down to Earth. Prediction: A frustrated JT fouls out of 2 of 3.
Lastly, the team ends the month against the Sixers (a team so derailed that AI becomes a positive influence). Allen “No Defense” Iverson means a big game for Evans, Beno, and at least one amazing Spanish dish from Sergio. Kings take the win at home, 107-100 (admittedly, I just picked a couple of numbers here).
Perhaps I am being a bit greedy here, asking a bit too much from Santa Westphal, but I think the Kings have a chance at ending the month at 16 and 15. Call it what you like; wishful thinking, terrible math skills, intuition, or sheer stupidity, this kid can’t help but believe in holiday miracles.
Post Script: This is my first attempt at a fanpost...so go easy. I am a casual fan, who got bored at work; nothing more.