Men shut their doors against a setting sun.
The Suns are setting. Steve Nash's days in the desert seem to be reaching their end, Grant Hill is out having recently undergone knee surgery, and Phoenix is two games out of the playoffs. But the Suns refuse to go away quietly. The playoffs aren't yet out of the question, as Phoenix could potentially pass Houston and the finally fading Jazz. The Kings hope to put the playoffs a little further out of reach as they host the Suns tonight at Power Balance Pavilion.
The Suns are no pushovers, but the Kings should have a pretty good shot at winning if they can put forth the type of team effort we saw last night against Minnesota.
Shannon Brown started in Grant Hill's place on Sunday, and is expected to again. Nash and Brown will be joined in the starting line-up by Jared Dudley, Channing Frye, and Marcin Gortat.
The Kings' leading scorer Marcus Thornton is going to be reevaluated today, but is expected to miss tonight's game. That would mean an anticipated starting backcourt of Isaiah Thomas and Tyreke Evans. With John Salmons still injured and Tyreke in the backcourt, Terrence Williams could get the start at small forward. Jason Thompson and DeMarcus Cousins will round out the Kings starting line-up.
Thornton's injury could potentially result in more minutes for Jimmer Fredette, but the size and athleticism of Phoenix's guards makes me believe we'll see more of Francisco Garcia, and less of Jimmer. I'd expect Tyreke to guard Nash, but Brown still won't be an easy assignment for Isaiah, who has struggled with bigger guards this season.
I'm excited to watch Cousins and Gortat battle. Gortat has posted 26 double-doubles this season, 7th most in the NBA. Of course, Cousins has posted the 6th most with 31 doubles-doubles.
The game's at 7. Game threads are set for 7 and 8:30. Let's go Kings!