After a frustrating, disappointing, agonizing loss at the buzzer to the Suns, the Kings have no time to dwell on the many many mistakes of that game, because the Warriors are in town. Winners of five in a row and 16 of their last 18 games, the Warriors come into Golden 1 Center flaming hot and at the absolute worst moment for a Kings franchise hobbled by injuries, and weary after a long trip while also having played a game the night before. If you’re hoping to see a close game, then pray that Steve Kerr rests his top four to give playing time to the B-Squad. This could get ugly, and in a hurry. Let’s talk Kings basketball.
When: Saturday, February 4th, 7:30 pm PST
Where: Golden 1 Center, CSN-CA, KHTK Sports 1140 AM
For Your Consideration
What Does It Take to Be #1?
So, we all know that the Warriors are good, but I figure it might be fun to list out some basic stats as a way of describing to you the buzz saw that the Kings will be running into Saturday night. The Warriors are the highest scoring team in the league at 118.4 points per game. They have the highest offensive and defensive ratings in the NBA. They’re first in the league in the following categories: field goals made, field goal percentage, two point field goal percentage, defensive rebounding, assists, steals, and blocks. On defense, they hold their opponents to the lowest three point percentage in the league, and the second lowest total field goal percentage. They also lead the league in jerseys sold to Laker’s fans.
There are those games that come up in the season, especially when you root for a team as topsy-turvy as the Kings, that you can pencil in a loss. “They don’t play the game on paper!”, sure. I get that, but tonight the Kings focus really should be on two things 1) not letting a fatigue injury creep up on anyone else and 2) learning as much as they can from the way the Warriors play ball. Winning is easy when you have four of the top 15 players in the league, but if the Kings current ownership is obsessed with being the Warriors, everyone in the organization needs to start taking notes about the brand of basketball they play. Those draft picks we’re giving away in exchange for Philadelphia’s pudding cup and a PB&J to be named later? The Warriors stashed and drafted the core of their team. The savvy vets they signed over the last few years weren’t run off, or un-signed due to a bogus medical claim, or Matt Barnes.
The team itself needs to focus up a bit, and learn to execute under the pressure of the best rated defense in the league. If they want earn a spot and not just receive a spot the playoffs, this game is the caliber of basketball they should strive for. Striving for the eighth seed does nothing, but allow you to settle for mediocrity. Willie Cauley-Stein has been working hard for his pay checks the last few weeks; let’s see how Draymond Green is working in comparison for his. Malachi Richardson is earning minutes for his offensive outputs, but lets see how he responds to a shooter like Klay Thompson guarding him end to end. This game could very well be put in the L column before tip-off today, but that doesn’t mean it has to be a loss.
The Kings blow out the Warriors by 20.
Kings: 127, Warriors: 107