WHAT: The Nets are three games into their 7-game road trip, and, well, they’re also three losses into it. They are now 36-36 on the season and in desperate need for a win. Hard to call this a “must win,” but at this point....?
WHERE: Golden 1 Center, Sacramento, CA
WHEN: 10:00 p.m. EST
HOW: YES, NBCSCA; NBA League Pass
THE STORY: Game Preview
One of Sacramento’s downfalls this season has been their defense. They allow 114.9 points per game, the fifth worst mark in the league. They make up for it by scoring 114 points per game, but 114 is less than 114.9 by .9 so that is why they aren’t a playoff team. Basically. Some of their worst defenders are on the wings, with culprits like Buddy Hield and Bogdan Bogdanovic. They aren’t horrid, but they also aren’t particularly great defenders and the way the Kings play, with a lot of fast paces run and gun offense, they are set up to allow a decent amount of points going the other way. It’s an offense-first team. Caris LeVert and Spencer Dinwiddie will be issues for the Kings in this one. LeVert looked especially potent in the first half against the Clippers, and if he can continue playing with that kind of energy and bounce the Nets will have a much easier time finding a win in California.
Believe it or not, the next two matchups are probably the easiest games left in the season for Brooklyn. Until the final game of the season when the Nets play the Heat, the Kings and Lakers are the only two current non-playoff teams we’ll see. There are 10 games left, and most of them come against some of the best teams in the league. This means that the Kings and Lakers games are extra important as the Nets look to solidify their spot in the playoffs and maybe even take back that six seed they held onto for such a long time.
For more on the Kings, check out: Sactown Royalty
Nothing But Nets: We’ve all seen this team play now, and if not you’ve seen them flipping through the sports channels or highlights from a pop-up at whatever sports website you look up at work when your TPS reports all get filed early. In many ways, the Nets and Kings are sharing similar paths in their conferences; young plucky underdogs who made an unexpected leap into the middle of the pack. The difference between the two is solely the conference they play in. I’m not here to complain about it. Coach Kenny Atkinson has his team playing smart and playing hard and I’m excited to see what the Nets can do now that they’re out from under a franchise defining terrible trade that crippled everything they do for half a decade. New York needs a team to root for and if the Knicks continue to be Dolan’d, maybe the Nets make themselves a little foothold there. We’ve seen this team so I only need to bring out a couple of reminder stats for you. The Nets are fourth in the NBA in three point attempts, they’re third in free throw attempts and they’re sixth in total rebounding. Those are the three things that the Kings need to take care of to win the game tonight.