March 13, 2012; Sacramento, CA, USA; Sacramento Kings shooting guard John Salmons (5) drives in against Golden State Warriors center Andris Biedrins (15) during the fourth quarter at Power Balance Pavilion. The Golden State Warriors defeated the Sacramento Kings 115-89. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-US PRESSWIRE
The Sacramento Kings finished their nine-game homestand 5-4 with Thursday's thrilling loss to the Utah Jazz, and now it's time to hit the road. And what a journey it is, all the way to ... Oakland to face the Golden State Warriors. The Kings "traveled" (commuted?) to Oakland on Friday and stayed overnight. They'll have one more game away from home -- Monday at Houston -- before returning to Sacramento.
The Warriors, of course, beat the living snot out of the Kings during that long homestand, despite missing Monta Ellis, Stephen Curry and Ekpe Udoh. It was one of more embarrassing losses of the season given the site, the competition and the margin. It was one of the few recent games in which the Kings' offense wasn't remotely clean, and one of the common recent games in which the Kings' defense was abysmal. It certainly set an awful tone ahead of what turned out to be an inactive trade deadline for the team; thankfully, the club bounced back against the Celtics, Wolves and Grizzlies to renew spirits locally.
For the current season, the Warriors essentially traded Ellis and Udoh for Richard Jefferson, given that Andrew Bogut won't play until next fall. Needless to say, that makes Golden State a much worse team. But the Kings have shown a canny ability to play awful ball against awful teams, and to be abysmal on the road. So stay tuned on this one.
The game's at 7:30, and NBA TV will carry it in addition to Comcast SportsNet California. Game threads are scheduled for 7:30 and 9. Let's go Kings!