March 28, 2012; Sacramento, CA, USA; Sacramento Kings power forward DeMarcus Cousins (15) drives to the basket against San Antonio Spurs center Tim Duncan (21) during the fourth quarter at Power Balance Pavilion. The Spurs defeated the Kings 117-112. Mandatory Credit: Kyle Terada-US PRESSWIRE
Sunday night Kings fans showed their true colors. Faced with the latest stomach punch from the Maloofs, 16,000 Kings fans came out and cheered for our team. Despite all that had happened, fans donned their purple and black and came out in force. Regardless of whether you agree or disagree with the idea of boycotting games, it was great to see even more proof that Sacramento will support the Kings through thick and thin. The team responded with a thrilling, last-second victory over Portland, snapping a 7-game losing streak.
Tonight the Kings look to keep the winning streak alive as they host the San Antonio Spurs at Power Balance Pavilion. Tonight marks the third game of a back-to-back-to-back for San Antonio, having beaten the Warriors Monday and the Lakers last night. The Spurs are on a 4-game win streak, and currently hold a half game lead over the Thunder for the best record in the West. Given the brutal nature of the Spurs schedule this week (they get tomorrow off and then play the Lakers again Friday), don't be surprised if Gregg Popovich opts to rest his key starters. Popovich is known for resting veterans like Tim Duncan, Tony Parker, and Manu Ginobili when he feels it helps the Spurs long term.
The Kings, meanwhile, are fresh off two days of rest. The Kings will be without John Salmons, who it appears more and more likely is being shut down for the remainder of the season, and Hassan Whiteside, who is officially out for the remainder of the season after suffering an ankle injury. The Kings will be otherwise healthy, with an expected starting line-up of Isaiah Thomas, Marcus Thornton, Tyreke Evans, Jason Thompson, and DeMarcus Cousins. The Kings should be looking to push the tempo early and often to take advantage of the scheduling benefit presented to them. The Spurs are one of the best teams in the league, but Sacramento has already stolen one game from them this season. The Kings have a great opportunity to come out with a lot of energy and steal another win, regardless of whether or not the Spurs rest their starters.
Tip off is at 7pm PDT. Game threads will be up at 7 and 8:30. Go Kings!