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Kings vs. Hornets Preview: Let's not go winless on the rest of this trip ok?

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Cary Edmondson-USA TODAY Sports

For the first time in over a decade the Sacramento Kings are facing the Charlotte Hornets.  Man it feels good to have that stupid Bobcats nickname out of the NBA (although it's been replaced by the almost as bad Pelicans).  Kemba Walker is returning for the first time in weeks tonight so it might be a tough one, especially as Sacramento has lost 19 of 22 on the road. Tonight's game tips off at 4:00 pm Pacific on CSN California and KHTK Sports 1140.

3 THINGS TO LOOK FOR

1. Charlotte hasn't had the same success they've had as last year when they were a bit of a surprise team, but they're still a very defensive-oriented club that likes to slow the game down.  While they're ranked just 28th in offense they do have weapons.  Mo Williams has been on fire since being traded to the Hornets, Kemba Walker is streaky, Al Jefferson is phenomenal in the post and even Lance Stephenson can get going if you let him. This won't be an easy game for Sacramento by any means.

2. The Hornets have the best defensive rebounding percentage in the entire NBA.  If you miss, they don't give you much of an opportunity to get the ball back.  However they have the third worst offensive rebounding percentage, so they also don't get many second chance points.

3. Having Kemba Walker back adds another dimension to Charlotte's game.  It's unknown whether or not Walker will start or come off the bench in his return.  Still, having Walker and Williams gives Charlotte two guards that can slice a defense apart.  Williams has averaged 21.4 points per game in 10 games with Charlotte and given his shooting ability I wouldn't be surprised to see him share court time with Walker to provide a unique look.

MATCHUP OF THE GAME

Michael Kidd-Gilchrist vs. Rudy Gay

Rudy has been Sacramento's go-to scorer since George Karl has taken over, even moreso than DeMarcus Cousins.  MKG is a bit like Kawhi Leonard in terms of build on the defensive side of the ball and those types of guys tend to give Rudy problems.  Rudy will have to do his best to not force the issue and try to get good shots or passes if there isn't an open lane.

PREGAME LIMERICK

Remember when we drafted Bismack Biyombo?
Trading him for Salmons and Jimmer was a bad combo.
But we've moved on,
Those guys are gone.
Now let's win and dance the mambo.

PREDICTION

Kings 101, Hornets 100 after Kemba Walker's game-winning three pointer is taken away after someone notices that what we thought was Kemba Walker, professional NBA player, was actually a 500 foot tall crustacean from the paleolithic era.