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Kings vs. Pelicans Preview: Getting Busy in the Big Easy

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The Kings are in New Orleans to face off against the Pelicans in the home opener... ruhoh.

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Kimani Okearah

After losing their home opener in a game that was far more competitive than it had any business being, the Sacramento Kings waste no time in getting to their busy road schedule and have found themselves in Louisiana to take on the King Cake Baby and his army of basketball playing minions. Had DeMarcus not chosen to sign with the Warriors, that previous sentence would have been something more along the lines of “...to take on a big headed, overly theatrical King baby whose violent flailing and writhing haunt Grant Napear and the other children in the stands” but alas, I’ll just have to find a different way to insult Peaches, and get you all into a comment war over Boogie. No, the Kings will not be facing off against our favorite weakened Achilles, but instead will face off against the three headed big man hydra of Anthony Davis, Nikola Mirotic and Marvin Bagley’s best case scenario Julius Randle, a few days after they all scored 20 plus to stomp all over the Rockets on opening night.

Luckily for us fans, Sacramento’s two best and most exciting post players will be well rested, seeing as how they didn’t even really play in the opener! Dave Joerger: see the light and give Z-Bo and Kosta Koufos the minutes they deserve! (Please don’t kill me, that was a joke!) Let’s talk Kings basketball!

When: Friday, October 19th; 5:00 pm PST

Where: Smoothie King Center; New Orleans, LA

TV: NBCSCA

Radio: KHTK Sports 1140 AM

For Your Consideration

Pelican’t Stress This Enough: I’ve got to make sure I preface this the right way. I’d hate for you to be stuck in that five o’clock traffic, listening to the sultry sounds of Gary Gerould, only to be rudely interrupted by the fact that the Kings are getting swarmed like a tray of french fries left unattended on a pier. The New Orleans Pelicans stomped the living hell out of the Rockets on Wednesday. New Orleans scored 130 points in that game. Yeah, I know “it’s the Rockets” but this wasn’t some shootout that went New Orleans way, they worked Houston over with Anthony Davis’ 32, Mirotic’s 30 and Randle’s 25 points off the bench leading the way for the birds. The Pelicans scored 130 points in a game where Elfrid Payton started. Yes, this game was so bad that Elfrid Payton played. This game was so bad that Elfrid recorded himself a triple-double.

I guess if there’s one good thing about squaring off against a team where all their high powered offense is coming from out of post players is the Kings can throw literally 9 different guys out there to defend against them. Willie fouls out? We’ve got Giles. Giles gone? Alright, Marvin, use these four minutes of playing time tonight wiser than we used our draft pick! What? Marvin’s gone? ... I digress. The Kings are overstocked with big men, and ones that could give the likes of Anthony Davis or Julius Randle a different look. It’ll be interesting to see how deep the rotation goes tonight.

Tonight’s game will be all about adjustments for both the players and the expectation of fans. Willie had a great game against Rudy Gobert on Wednesday night, but if Willie wants his money this off-season, he needs to do it again tonight and then again on Sunday night. He’s always been able to toss out a random good game. He put up big numbers in one of the first games of the season last year too, and then his talents spent the rest of the season blinking in and out of existence like Schrödinger’s Starting Caliber Center.

De’Aaron Fox will be another guy that Kings fans will be ready to see put up another thirty something minutes of fantastic basketball. Fox changes the entire identity of the team when he gets on a roll, and there were flashes during Wednesday’s opener where the kid looked like a star. His ability to get down the floor in a hurry is elite, but being able to put the ball in the hole through contact is going to be the thing that takes him to another level. He’s shown enough improvement in his shooting that I’m comfortable saying he’ll be a solid shooter years down the road, but if he can finish a layup with Anthony Davis swarming, Fox can absolutely find himself on an All-NBA team.

S(acramento) T(heater) R(eview)

Tonight’s movie: The Maltese Falcon

What IMDB Says: A private detective takes on a case that involves him with three eccentric criminals, a gorgeous liar, and their quest for a priceless statuette.

What Roger Ebert Has to Say: “Among the movies we not only love but treasure, “The Maltese Falcon” stands as a great divide. Consider what was true after its release in 1941 and was not true before:

(1) The movie defined Humphrey Bogart’s performances for the rest of his life; his hard-boiled Sam Spade rescued him from a decade of middling roles in B gangster movies and positioned him for “Casablanca,” “Treasure of the Sierra Madre,” “The African Queen” and his other classics.

(2) It was the first film directed by John Huston, who for more than 40 years would be a prolific maker of movies that were muscular, stylish and daring.

(5) And some film histories consider “The Maltese Falcon” the first film noir. It put down the foundations for that native American genre of mean streets, knife-edged heroes, dark shadows and tough dames.”

Trailer:

For Rent: On Amazon ($3.99) and Youtube ($2.99)

Prediction

Buddy Hield has himself a revenge game tonight, dropping treys like a lunch lady on a wet cafeteria floor, lighting the Pelicans up for 30 plus points on 6 three point shots. De’Aaron Fox spends the whole night blowing through Elfrid Payton like he’s 2018’s Gary Payton and the Kings take an average amount of threes for an NBA team tonight and your grandmother will ask what’s wrong with them.

Kings 115, Pelicans 111