After getting their revenge in a 21-point blowout of the Los Angeles Lakers in front of a bunch stars in Hollywood on Tuesday evening, the San Antonio Spurs (44-16) wrap up their three-game West coast road trip in Sacramento.
The Spurs will play the Kings as the Spurs are playing their last night of their back-to-back-to-back sequence. The Spurs didn’t use DeJuan Blair against the Lakers, so he should be ready to take on heavy minutes against the Kings.
The indication is that the "big three" of Tony Parker, Tim Duncan and Manu Ginobili who tore apart the Lakers, will most likely sit this game out. Even without the "big three", the Spurs still have plenty of depth to field a highly efficient roster as their bench scored 67 points against the Golden State Warriors, and 45 points against the Lakers.
The Spurs are on a four-game winning streak yet again, as they face a Kings team that won its last game against the depleted Portland Trailblazers, but are 2-8 in their last 10 games, and 15-15 at home.
Case No. 61: Sacramento Kings (20-41)
Marcus Thornton – 18.6 points (15.7 FGA), DeMarcus Cousins – 17.6 points (15.2 FGA), Tyreke Evans – 16.5 points (14.5 FGA), Isaiah Thomas – 11.4 points (8.8 FGA), Terrence Williams – 9.7 points (8.2 FGA), Jason Thompson – 8.6 points (6.7 FGA), Jimmer Fredette – 7.5 points (7.2 FGA), John Salmons – 7.5 points (7.5 FGA)
The Kings have eight players who have good scoring numbers, but if you look at their amount of attempts, you notice they have a very poor efficiency as it takes almost each shot to get their average amount of points.
Shooting/Posting High Percentages
Jason Thompson (52%), Terrence Williams (48%)
Marcus Thornton (6.1 x 3PT FGA – 35%), Jimmer Fredette (3.6 x 3PT FGA – 37%), Isaiah Thomas (3.4 x 3PT FGA – 37%)
Gets to the free throw line
DeMarcus Cousins (5.8 FTA – 71%), Tyreke Evans (4.2 FTA – 78%), Marcus Thornton (3.3 FTA – 87%)
Cousins and Evans’ ability to get to the free throw line can be a problem; the Spurs must do their best to keep the two of them away from the line. When the Spurs lost to the Kings in San Antonio earlier in the season, Evans’ driving ability and getting to the line was a big reason for the loss.
Enforcers in the paint
DeMarcus Cousins (11 rebounds), Jason Thompson (6.8 rebounds)
Tyreke Evans (4.6 assists)
DeMarcus Cousins (1.5 steals), Tyreke Evans (1.4 steals), Marcus Thornton (1.4 steals), Terrence Williams (1.1 steals)
Denying the Rim
DeMarcus Cousins (1.2 blocks)
Offense vs. Offense
1. Points: Spurs (102.3) – Kings (98.1) = Spurs
2. Assists: Spurs (22.7) – Kings (19.1) = Spurs
3. Shooting percentage: Spurs (47%) – Kings (43.2%) = Spurs
4. Three point shooting percentage: Spurs (39%) – Kings (31.6%) = Spurs
5. Turnovers: Spurs (13.1) – Kings (14.1) = Spurs
Offensive Leader: Spurs 5-0
Defensively, the Spurs just need to play their usual defensive game. The Kings shoot a low percentage from the field, and especially from beyond the arc.
Defense vs. Defense
1. Opponent scoring: Spurs (96.3) – Kings (104.3) = Spurs
2. Opponent shooting: Spurs (45%) – Kings (47%) = Spurs
3. Opponent 3PT shooting: Spurs (36%) – Kings (36%) = Tie
4. Rebounds: Spurs (42.8) – Kings (43.2) = Kings
5. Personal Fouls: Spurs (17.3) – Kings (19.6) = Spurs
Defensive Leader: Spurs 3-1, one tie
If the "big three" don’t play, the Spurs will need a few players to have big nights, but anyone who gets minutes is capable of producing big numbers as the Kings allow their opponents to shoot 47%, which means there should be a lot of open shots.
As I’ve stated over the last two previews, one can never know which lineups or players Spurs head coach Gregg Popovich will use during a back-to-back game. Regardless of Pop’s decision, the Spurs should have enough depth to sustain Sacramento’s offensive attack, and the Spurs should have a chance to stay with the Kings, who have only won 20 games all season long.
It’s the third night of a back-to-back-to-back; my guess is the Spurs won’t shoot too high of a shooting percentage, not because of good Kings defense, but because of tired legs.
I still think a Spurs team missing its core players can possibly win against the Kings, so long as they continue to run their game plan on both ends of the floor.
The Spurs will have their chance at a win; the Kings’ defense will allow them to. All the Spurs need to do is put the ball in the hole.
why would the Kings even want this game? I don't really condone tanking, if the Spurs big 3 don't play even if they Kings win it'll mean nothing. It won't be "something to build on" for next season.
@Spursforever69 No it's about winning games because you play well to win. You have to start somewhere. It won't mean much in the grand scheme of things, and I'm not claiming it will either, but I am saying that idea needs to start somewhere.
Focus on a small task. Beating a beatable Spurs team right here and now. Beating OKC after the embarrassment last Friday. Beating Charlotte. A 3 game win streak would be especially important to this team.
Sure it's easy to say it's not a big deal, but I don't remember tanking getting any team a draft pick in the lottery era. If the Kings win the next 5 games, I'll be happier than hell. Am I worried about 5 or 10 extra lottery balls? Not in the slightest. I'll take those 5 wins, even if they seem meaningless to the entire world, because winning is better than losing and winning the games is what it's about after all.
Winning the lottery is about having luck.
What I'm hoping, honestly, as a Kings fan is that the Kings push the pace. San Antonio has played 2 nights previously, and even though their young legs will be out there, even young legs can tire on the 3rd game in 3 nights.
San Antonio is a brilliant offensive team, but a lot of that starts with Parker, Duncan and Ginobili. Without Duncan, that will help DeMarcus Cousins get easier shots unless Tiago Splitter D's up Cousins effectively this time around.
Should be an interesting game, but the Spurs are beatable tonight without Duncan around. As a Kings fan, I'll be especially disappointed if they don't pull this one out. Given how the season has gone for this group, it wouldn't be surprising to see the Spurs blow the Kings out by 20.
I could see all three sitting. As much as that is going to kill my fantasy team, the only one I could see may play is Tony only because he sat out the 4th quarters of both of the last games. He should be well rested even with that monstrous night last night. #killingmyfantasyteam #trustPop
I think Manu plays. He already has sat out half the season so he's rested enough. Besides he says he's lacking confidence and any kind of rhythm. This would be a good game for him to get a little bit of confidence back. You don't want him going into the playoffs without any confidence in himself.