Just four games left before the 2013-14 season is over, and tonight the Kings face Portland (7:00 pm on Comcast SportsNet California and KHTK 1140) in what will be their last "road trip" of the season, since they'll also play the Clippers in Los Angeles on Saturday before coming back home for the final two games of the season. Portland's cooled off from their blistering start, but they're still very good.
MATCHUP OF THE GAME
DeMarcus vs. LaMarcus
While these two players likely won't see much time guarding one another, they're the focal points of both teams' offenses. Cousins has been playing phenomenal lately, while Aldridge has been rounding back into form after coming back from injury. Both players have done exceedingly well in these matchups so far this season, and the trick will be stopping Aldridge from going off while Cousins continues to do so.
1. During the Kings relocation saga, I had many dark thoughts about what would happen to my NBA fandom if the Kings ended up leaving. I know that if they had left, I probably would have become a Portland Trail Blazers fan for a few reasons, but mainly because they're the fan base that I most admire and respect aside from our own. All my experiences with Blazers fans have been great. Unlike most fans who attend Kings games to support the other team, I've rarely seen obnoxious Blazers fans (I can't say the same for Warriors or Lakers fans). Also, I think Blazer's Edge is one of, if not the best, team blog out there and I love the work that Dave Deckard and Benjamin Golliver do over there. It's one of the few non-Kings blogs that I'll check out regularly.
2. If I had to guess, no Isaiah Thomas again tonight. I'm not sure why the Kings just haven't officially shut him down for the rest of the season. Ray McCallum has been ridden to the maximum in Thomas' absence, and it's no surprise to me that his shot hasn't been falling lately. He's essentially played the entire game in every game since Thomas went out, and that's a big jump from barely playing. For McCallum's own health, Malone has to give him more of a break, even if it means a lesser chance of winning, because let's face it, even with McCallum playing all these minutes, we haven't translated that to much more winning anyway.
3. Willie Reed was recalled from the Bighorns, where he averaged 13.6 points, 7.6 rebounds, 1.2 assists and 2.4 blocks in 25 minutes a game over 5 games, helping Reno secure a playoff spot. Now he'll be with the Kings until the D-League playoffs start, and it will be interesting to see if he gets any significant playing time, and if he does, if he plays with Cousins. I would like to see how the team looks with Cousins paired with an actual shot blocker.
Your penchant for missed dunks is
surpassed by lil' Ben
Kings 95, Blazers 110 as lack of depth bites Sacramento in the butt once again.