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Kings vs. Trail Blazers Preview: That’s All Folks!

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The Kings are in search of their 40th win and are in Portland taking on a Blazers squad on a back-to-back!

Kimani Okearah

Well, it’s here. The Kings season ends Wednesday night, win or lose, after heading to Portland and taking on the a playoff bound Trailblazers squad on their second night of a back to back. Ending the most exciting and frustrating season of Sacramento basketball since 2006 means closing the book on some wonderfully unexpected Kings related storylines and with 48 minutes left to play, hopefully there’s still enough time to eek out a couple of milestones before we put this season on the shelf.

For the last time till October, let’s talk Kings basketball!

When: Wednesday, April 10th; 7:30 pm PST

Where: Moda Center, Portland, OR

TV: NBCSCA

Radio: KHTK Sports 1140 AM

For Your Consideration

The End is the Beginning is the End: I want to take stock of everything that has happened over the course of the last two seasons, and compare them a tad just to give some perspective of where we’re at. Sacramento has jumped 12 and maybe even 13 wins in a Western Conference that gets more and more stacked every season. The Kings jumped from 98.8 points per game and the slowest pace in the league, to scoring 114 points per game and running at the 4th highest pace in the league. The Kings offensive and defensive ratings jumped from 29th and 28th respectively to 17th and 19th. During this very same preview last season, I wrote the following: “This summer will be a critical one in terms of constructing a Kings squad capable of escaping the immense gravity of the cellar just get within visual distance of respectability. Cap space, draft picks, Jack Cooley needing to satiate his urges for human flesh; all of these decisions would be precarious for even the most seasoned of front offices. Having Vlade still learning on the fly and an untested Brandon Williams at the helm will test the mettle of any fan paying attention. From top to bottom, the Kings have to get better. Will they?” ... There’s no doubt in my mind that they did, there’s no doubt in my minds that the Kings are a respectable level in the NBA and for that miracle, Vlade and Dave Joerger have earned a permanent modicum of respectability in this 13 year debacle.

As for tonight, there are two big things that we’d all like to see happen: the Kings can still reach their 40th win and Buddy Hield can break a meaningless but nonetheless fun record of most Three Pointers in a Player’s First Three Seasons. And to add more to that, he’s doing it against the guy who currently holds the record, Damian Lillard. With the Blazers having to beat the Lakers at the buzzer last night, there’s a chance fans catch a break and watch key Blazers sit and rest for the playoffs. There’s an equal chance that Lillard and CJ McCollum are out for blood and one extra win to head into the playoffs hot. Like everything else with the Kings, you’ll just have to wait and see.

Fin: I want to thank you all again for another wonderful season of writing for you all. You’ve supported me throughout these last few years as I tried to find myself in my writing and tried to annoy you all into leaving, and you just seemingly never have. This season was one of the hardest bits of time in my personal life that I’ve had to go through and while I’ll get into that at some later time, just know that while I wasn’t commenting nearly as much this season, I’ve read and appreciated each and every kind work, and I love all of you. Also, thanks to Akis and Greg who once again find excuses to keep me doing these things each year. This season they had to endure me telling them DAY OF that previews weren’t showing up, and weeks of me being gone. The slack that was picked up by everyone on the staff was an immense help, and without the guiding hand of every single individual on this staff at one point or another, I would have stayed gone permanently after this winter. Go easy on these goobers this off-season, things are going to get weird.

Thanks for being my great big, weird, creepy extended family. I can’t wait to see you all again in the fall. I guess the real playoffs were the friends we make along the way.

Prediction

Kings: 40 wins, Portland: Playoffs