October 5, 2018, 3:42 pm
The Kings will be looking to upset the defending champs Friday night when they take on the Warriors in Seattle.
While a game against the Warriors presents its own challenges, Sacramento will also be dealing with their first back-to-back set of the season. The team has placed an emphasis on pushing the pace this preseason, so the players will need to keep extra focus on running the floor and maintaining a high level of energy.
Playing in Seattle will also add an interesting wrinkle to the exhibition. Kings fans surely haven’t forgotten the relocation saga, but they won’t be the only team with a Seattle connection. Kevin Durant will also be returning to the city that he started his career in.
With the interesting location and a tough opponent, there should be plenty to watch for. Below are some of the Kings things to keep in mind heading into the matchup:
The Warriors have some of the top scorers in the league at four positions, making them one of the most difficult teams to defend. Any mistake that the Kings make defensively will be exploited.
Playing effective team defense is the only answer against a team as talented as the Warriors. That should be difficult to do with so many young players on the Kings, but it should also be a great test to see how they respond.
Playing on consecutive nights can be hard for any team, but it’s especially difficult for a team this young so early in the year. Golden state will be pushing the pace, so the Kings will need to find a way to keep up the energy to keep this game close.
Plenty of players received rest last night, but it will still be interesting to see if the team can continue to push the pace. If they’re able to bring the same energy that they did in Los Angeles, it would be a great sign that this team should be more than ready to push the pace in the regular season.
While it’s only been two games, the Kings have struggled to find a consistent contributor at small forward. With Justin Jackson struggling mightily and a general lack of size on the perimeter, it may be time to give Gabriel a shot to earn a spot in the rotation.
The sample is small, but Gabriel was impressive in his 16 minutes against the Lakers. He finished the night with 10 points on 4-for-6 shooting while also contributing two steals and a block. Jackson should still have a shot to earn the starting spot, but Gabriel should also be given a chance. A strong outing against the Warriors would surely help his case as well.
PG – De’Aaron Fox
SG – Buddy Hield
SF – Justin Jackson
PF – Skal Labissiere
C – Willie Cauley-Stein
Kosta Koufos (hamstring) – OUT
Bogdan Bogdanovic (Knee) – OUT
HOW TO WATCH
When: 7:30 p.m. PST (10:30 p.m. ET)