Thursday night’s game against the Clippers was another rough one for the Kings. Sub-ninety point scoring, 40% shooting, 26 turnovers and a small slew of injuries (George Hill, groin; Bogdan Bogdanovic, ankle): the hallmarks of must avoid television. What does Friday the 13th have in store for the Kings? How about a matchup against the Golden State Warriors, on the road, and the night after laying a big stinker in Los Angeles? This might be the one time Kings fans are lucky the game isn’t televised. Now that I say that, I’m absolutely certain that whatever Kings are left will find a way to win. Let’s talk Kings basketball!
When: Friday, October 13th; 7:30 pm PST
Where: Oracle Arena, Oakland, CA
Television: LOL NOPE
Radio: KHTK Sports 1140 AM
Questions of the Game
Who Scheduled This Preseason and Why Do They Hate Sacramento?? This is a legit question here. Why in 2017 do the Kings have a preseason that is cosplaying as a Lock-Out season schedule? The NBA has taken great lengths to reduce the stress of constant play and travel on their players by incrementally spreading the scheduling out these last few seasons, but seemingly, the Kings haven’t gotten the memo. With NBA teams supposedly only averaging 14.4 back-to-backs this season, the Kings have had two in their preseason schedule, with the first being a three-games-in-four-nights situation! I won’t complain about the second night of the back to back being against the Warriors, because well that’s just regular Kings bad luck, but on Friday the 13th, this scheduling seems extra unlucky.
Little extra fun here: After tonight, the Kings won’t play again until they play the Houston Rockets at home next Wednesday. From there, they have a day off and then play in Dallas and Denver on consecutive nights. Yep, the Kings start their season with three games in four nights.
Who’s the High Point Man Tonight? This is the Warriors they’re playing. Regardless of which team rests which players, the Kings are going to struggle to score tonight. They couldn’t top 90 points against a semi-porous Clippers squad that was missing most of their starters, so how do you think they’ll fare against a fully healthy Warriors squad? Akis brought up a great point in his recap of Thursday’s game against the Clippers: the Kings don’t have a go-to guy, and I have this feeling that we won’t be finding out who that is tonight. If you went looking at Friday night’s match-ups for any semblance of light, you’d have had better luck finding some staring at a vantablack wall with your eyes closed. But someone has to be the high scorer right? Is it presumed starting point guard Frank Mason again, being guarded by Steph Curry? Buddy Hield, the Kings best pure scorer, locked down by Klay Thompson? My honest to goodness guess here is it ends up being someone like Kosta Koufos with a solid 14 points. Who you got? Why?
Match-up of the Game
Skal Labissiere vs. Draymond Green: There is something eternally heart-warming about watching young budding talent getting their butt kicked by an old-head. Whether it’s those kids at the YMCA getting run out of the gym by some retirees with knee pads or 21 year old Skal Labissiere getting pushed out of the post by a wily veteran of 27 years old in Draymond Green, seeing the struggle before the growth is one of my favorite pastimes for the NBA. Tonight, I have this feeling there’s going to be a lot of struggle. Skal is still a couple of years from being a fully developed NBA specimen and Draymond Green is, well, he’s an ornery glob of muscle with piss and vinegar in his veins and a hunger for turkey-taps in his heart. In only his second season in the NBA, there’s no way we should expect Skal to come out on top in a match-up like this, but what he can do, is start showing those flashes of understanding. An emphatic block here, a post move that gets Draymond going the wrong way there; little things that show the game is slowing down for Skal. And, if not, well then at least a couple of us gluttons for punishment will be happy to see Skal get a little old fashioned motivation to push him that much harder.
Prediction: Kings obviously win this one.
Kings: 99, Warriors, 94