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Preview and Game Thread: Kings open up preseason against Trail Blazers

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What to look for as a new-look Sacramento team takes the court together for the first time.

Photo by Rocky Widner/NBAE via Getty Images

For the first time in nearly four months, we will see the Sacramento Kings back on the court. The Kings open up their 2020-21 NBA preseason schedule with a road game against the Portland Trail Blazers.

This will also be Sacramento’s first game with Monte McNair as general manager. McNair had a busy offseason as he put his finishing touches on the roster. The Kings lost Bogdan Bogdanovic, Alex Len, Harry Giles and Kent Bazemore in free agency. McNair replaced them by signing veterans Hassan Whiteside, Glenn Robinson III and Frank Kaminsky while also getting the highly-regarded Tyrese Haliburton in the 2020 NBA Draft.

It will be interesting to see how Haliburton performs in his first professional game. Sacramento has high hopes for the rookie, so it will be nice to get our first glimpse of what he can do on the court.

One thing to look out for in this game is how the Kings’ offense looks compared to last season. Head coach Luke Walton brought in veteran Alvin Gentry to help design a more modern system that is centered on playing faster and pushing the ball up the court.

Sacramento ranked 19th in pace during the 2019-20 season, which was frustrating due to the speed on the roster. According to teammates, point guard De’Aaron Fox was putting in work during the offseason and looks like he’s ready to take the next step in his career. Fox is at his best when he is able to use his speed to get the offense going. If the Kings are truly dedicated to playing quicker this season, look for Fox to get plenty of opportunities on the fast break.

Marvin Bagley III will miss the contest after a recent positive COVID-19 test, which caused him to miss the first few days of training camp, but he should be available for at least one of the preseason games.

Game information: Kings @ Trail Blazers

Time: 7:30 p.m. PT

TV: ESPN

Radio: KHTK 1140

What will you be looking for during tonight’s game?