How was Thanksgiving? Did you get stuffed like a Garrett Temple 1 on 3, fastbreak take to the rim? Did you avoid that Lakers fan in your family that still swears Lonzo is going to make the Lakers great again? Good. Now grab yourself a handful of Tums, sip a fat glass of water and put those pants with the hidden elastic waistband on; the Kings are back on your TV to give your eyes a helping of what your stomach got on Thursday. Kosta Koufos with some stuffing at the rim. Bogi and Willie bringing the buttery rolls and mashed “potatoes”. Ummm.... Z-Bo... is a butterb- you know what the metaphor has run its course and I’m done with it. The Clippers are in town, and losers in nine of their last ten games. Don’t get too excited; they just beat the Atlanta 46ers by 16 points. Let’s talk Kings basketball!
When: Saturday, November 25th; 7:00pm PST
Where: Golden 1 Center; Sacramento, CA
Radio: KHTK Sports 1140 AM
For Your Consideration
Keeping Up With the Clippers: The Clippers this year went through some casting changes this past off-season when Chris Paul left Lob City for Flop City in Houston. The Clippers are a movie franchise in the middle of a pivot, but not in a “replacing Katie Holmes with Maggie Gyllenhal in The Dark Knight” kind of way. In fact, when you think about it, the Clippers are actually a lot more like the Transformers movies; action packed with little substance, put up big numbers, have a lot of homer fans, sell a lot of merch, but are instantly forgettable as soon as awards season comes around. The Clippers replaced their Shia Lebeouf this off-season; the tiny heart of the franchise, who was constantly screaming at the other characters, falling all over the place and the only real watchable thing in the franchise, and in his stead, went out and got their Mark Wahlberg in Patrick Beverly; the seemingly tough, grizzled leader of their soft reboot, with half the range of the previous guy and even less to work with in terms of supporting cast. He’s out for the season with a torn meniscus. The Clippers’ Optimus Prime, Blake Griffin, has tried to inject life into a flailing franchise by inevitably and predictably turning heel. He’s punching other Autobots, dating a Kardashicon, and while he’s got some theoretically cool new weapons (like a semi-reliable jumper) the end product of the franchise is a flailing, uninspired mess, especially under the watchful eyes of aquatic based directors; Michael Bay/ Doc Rivers. Oh, just to round this out, DeAndre Jordan is Bumblebee, and Austin Rivers is definitely Wheelie. Don’t @ me.
So the Clippers are flailing. Blake Griffin averages 22.9 on 45% from 2 and 35% from three. Lou Williams comes off the bench for a cool 17 points a game and no one else averages more than 12.8 (Austin Rivers) after that. With guys like Blake Griffin and De’Andre Jordan, you’d expect the Clippers to be a great rebounding team; they’re not. Even with Jordan averaging just under 14 boards a game, the Clipper’s are 26th in total rebounds and 28th in defensive rebounds, so the Kings can get second chances tonight by the clipper-load if they wanted them. On the otherhand, the Los Angeles is going to be grabbing plenty of their own offensive rebounds, where they’re 9th in the league. The Clippers are 18th in the league in two point percentage, and 19th in 3 point percentage at 49.8% and 35.8%, respectively. They’re last in the league in assists too; surprising and a bit tragic when you think about Milos Teodosic’s injury robbing the Clippers and all fans of some passing wizardry. Doc River’s team is playing a prevent defense this season, and are 20th in steals, 23rd in blocks but also, 9th in player fouls. I played pool with a woman once who told me “you’ve gotta risk it to get the biscuit” and the Clippers are fine with going home hungry last night. I also just realized she was probably hitting on me with that phrase, and I missed my chance by like, six years. Wow, am I the Clippers?
Giving Thanks: I didn’t get a chance in my preview against the Lakers because I wasn’t about to get wishy washy the night we did battle against our sworn rivals. I can say it now because, well, it’s the Clippers and Akis is still too busy cosplaying Dionysis with his Thanksgiving leftovers to read this (If the Transformers metaphor is still in this preview, you’ll know I was right!). I want to say I’m thankful for all of you who read these previews. Your constant support (and pointing out my random 6th grade level mistakes) are the reason I’m still doing these. I’ll write a thousand words for ten total comments because those comments are intelligent, poetic (literally poems sometimes) and generally wonderful. I’m thankful for Akis and Greg, two amazing editors who have had my back during some difficult times last year, and though they do delete at least one good (terrible) joke a preview, they leave me alone for the most part, and “Let Bartlet Be Bartlet” for all you West Wings homers out there. I’m thankful for the other writers on the staff too; they constantly inspire me to do better, and, while I seldom reach such rarified air as they do, the only hard time they give me is when my Note 8 decides to individually text them in our group texts.
Sactown Royalty is a magical place. Thank you for letting me be a part of it.
Prediction: Kings trade George Hill pre-game to the Clips. The plan works perfectly, he does nothing and De’Aaron Fox scores 40 in a Kings win.
Kings: 99, Clippers: 84