Kings vs. Clippers preview: A familiar team arrives in Sacramento

USA TODAY Sports

A team the Kings beat twice in preseason is Sacramento's second regular season opponent.

Let's preview Kings vs. Clippers.

MATCHUP OF INTRIGUE I

DeMarcus Cousins vs. DeAndre Jordan.

Cousins was really good on Wednesday, as his 30-14-50% shooting line would attest. That came against JaVale McGee, Timofey Mozgov and J.J. Hickson. Most of DMC's success came against McGee and Mozgov, though he had some pretty moves on Hickson as well. Jordan is a defender in the style of McGee: a shotblocker who is still trying to figure out how to otherwise stop opponents. He is, however, strong than McGee and faster than Mozgov, so it'll be interesting to see how well Cousins attacks on the block. On the other end, Jordan is a threat only while airborne and receiving a lob from Chris Paul. Given how good CP3 is, that's a real concern.

Speaking of ...

MATCHUP OF INTRIGUE II

Greivis Vasquez and Isaiah Thomas vs. Chris Paul.

The Kings' point guards were exceptional on Wednesday. Last night against the Warriors, CP3 had 42 points, 15 assists and six steals. So, uh, yeah.

He also gave up 38 points to Stephen Curry, so the Kings' PGs should be able to score on CP3. But he's going to be a menace to defend. If there's any silver lining it's that he played 37 minutes then jumped on a plane, while Vasquez and I.T. didn't play yesterday.

SUBPLOT OF NOTE

DeMarcus Cousins and Blake Griffin appear to have a sincere mutual dislike for each other. Still. I don't particularly want to see an aggravated Cousins, but I also don't want to see an emboldened Griffin, so. Keep an eye on that.

COLOR PALETTE OF THE EVENING

It's a blackout at Sleep Train! Wear black!

PREGAME HAIKU

Chris Paul is special,
but don't count out our point guards.
Just our small forward.

PREDICTION

Kings 99, Clippers 95.

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