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Kings vs. Mavericks Preview: TANK FIGHT!

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With the battle for the first pick in the 2018 NBA Draft heating up, the Kings will face off against another cellar dweller gunning for that number one spot!

NBA: Dallas Mavericks at Sacramento Kings Ed Szczepanski-USA TODAY Sports

With just two games left until the All-Star Break and the Kings lead on the worst in the West is down to literally .001% over the setting Suns, the suddenly semi-competent young studs in Sacramento are going to have to loosen up their boot straps and grease their fingers if they want keep their grip on the top spot. Tonight they take on fellow dungeon troll Dallas in a match-up that has dire consequences for those fans of Luka Doncic and DeAndre Ayton; losers in eight of their last ten games, Dallas has come to lose! For those hopefuls looking for a good game betwixt two young, budding teams: ABANDON ALL HOPE, YE WHO ENTER HERE. This isn’t a game: it’s a skermish of suckitude, a clash of crap, an eighty-two game war of attrition where the only way to win ... is to lose.

Let’s talk Kings basketball.

When: Tuesday, February 13th; 5:30 pm PST

Where: American Airlines Arena; Dallas, TX

TV: NBCSCA

Radio: KHTK Sports 1140 AM

For Your Consideration

Treading Carefully: The Kings are the absolute worst thing in the world. Just when things were going right for us: the team had committed to playing inexperienced noobies, we dumped our best free agent signing in forever for almost nothing and punted two-thirds of our 2016 Draft, what a great time to tune out and catch up again around lottery selection time. But, something happened somewhere in the mess: the Kings have somehow gotten more watchable. The first half of the Portland game was legitimately fun, modern basketball. Seeing the young guys passing and scoring on a great defensive team was well worth the tune-in time. They had the common sense to punt the game in the second half, the same sense that evaded them when coming against the Timberwolves, where they played it close with yet another playoff team, and this time from wire to wire.

The Kings have suddenly found a bit of mojo, and while it isn’t translating too much in the wins-losses side of things, I’m a little conflicted. If the first pick in the 2018 Draft had it’s own social media pages, I’d be the creep sliding into their DM’s, liking their every post, commenting on their stuff like we were long-time friends. Yeah, I’m thirsty for the ultimate choice, and the Kings have made enough strides that I’m worried that all that fun they’ve been having is actually talent revealing itself and solidifying into the beginnings of a really good young team. They’re 4-6 in their last 10 games, and their last two losses have been competitive. What say you? Is it crazy that I’d watch a couple more bad, bad basketball games if it put us that much closer to having more ping pong balls than anyone else?

The Kings take on a team in the Mavericks that are just as bad, and in many similar ways. They’ve got a young point guard they’re grooming, have a mix of old, middling talent with young hungry kids and have a really good coach. The Mavs run at a similar pace to the Kings, score a few more points and play better defense, but overall are the Target Brand equivalent to Sacramento’s K-Mart Brand Basketball. This game has a chance of breaking out into a fun bout of basketball, but more likely than not, you’ll be closing your eyes and pushing hard enough on your lids to see the phosphenes by the end of the third. I hope you’re spry enough to see the one that flew by that looked a lot like the Kings logo with a #1 next to it.

Draft Dreams: We’re gonna be losing lots of games going forward, so when I see something worth sharing about anyone on our draft radar, I’ll share it here so we can remember the positive part of being such a terrible team.

Today’s dish: DeAndre Ayton à la carte.

Prediction: With De’Aaron Fox a little banged up, Dave Joerger makes a bold choice and starts Kosta Koufos at point guard. Shooting guard Zach Randolph has himself a great game, hitting 4 three pointers, but just can’t stay in front of whatever man the stick him on. Power Forward Buddy Hield continues to disappoint and only grabs 4 boards, scoring 12 points in limited minutes but providing nothing in the way of shot blocking. Dave Joerger gets thrown out of the game in the third after trying to forcefully dress Frank Mason in a uniform on the Kings bench, in the hopes that he could play spot minutes at center. Kings squeeze out a victory, and my left eye twitches whenever I see the current draft order.

Kings: 107, Mavs: 101