• The Kings headed to Minnesota Sunday night looking to start their three game roadtrip with a big win, but the team was unable to pull off the upset.

    The first quarter started off well for Sacramento thanks in large part to a hot start from De’Aaron Fox. Fox contributed seven of the team’s first nine points, finishing the quarter with 14 points on just five shots.

    The Wolves struggled to get into a rhythm offensively, but Karl-Anthony Towns steadied the team when he was on the floor. The Wolves repeatedly went to Towns in the post when they needed a basket, and the Kings struggled to do much to stop it.

    The Kings continued to play aggressively to start the second quarter and it paid off. The Kings continued to get good looks in transition, and the pressure that they applied on defense helped force plenty of turnovers. One of the biggest reasons for Sacramento’s success early in the second quarter was the play of Buddy Hield, who ended the quarter with 11 points and two steals.

    Sacramento was well on their way towards a big halftime lead, but turnover issues and poor shot selection allowed the Wolves to make a run and eventually take the lead.

    The Kings came back from halftime with the same intensity that they brought in the first half, but they were able avoid some of their mistakes that let the Wolves back into the game. Sacramento outscored Minnesota 26-19 in the third and built a five-point lead heading into the final quarter.

    Defense was mostly a positive for Sacramento early in the fourth quarter, but they struggled to keep the Wolves from getting to the free throw line. Minnesota finished with 15 more free throws than the Kings.

    Sacramento stuck with Minnesota until the very end, but the Wolves just couldn’t be stopped late. A big three from Buddy Hield with ten seconds left brought the Kings to within two points, but a steal by Jimmy Butler sealed the 111-106 victory for Minnesota.

    Sacramento will now head to Dallas where they should have a good opportunity to even up their record on the roadtrip against the Mavericks.

    GAME NOTES

    • Bruno Caboclo did not make his debut for the Kings against the Wolves, and it was mentioned during the broadcast that the team does not plan to play any of their new players until after the All-Star break. Iman Shumpert is currently dealing with a foot injury as well, so he may be out for an extended period.
    • De’Aaron Fox was active on both ends of the floor tonight, leading the Kings in scoring with 23 points while also getting three steals. Fox did a great job of using his speed to blow past his defender, but his ability to hit jumpers off the dribble made him particularly effective.
    • Sacramento was clearly looking to push the pace against the Wolves, and while that did lead to some great plays in transition it also led to quite a few turnovers. The team will get better as they get more comfortable running the floor, but it will be tough to win with 18 turnovers and just 17 assists.
    • JaKarr Sampson saw some time on the court in Minnesota, and while there were a few mistakes he was able to make a big difference with his effort and energy. Sampson is much more comfortable playing as a power forward, but he had been seeing quite a bit of time on the perimeter in recent weeks. Sampson should have a good chance to see some extra time on the floor with the team looking to play it’s younger players, and he could make a nice impact as a high energy stretch four.

Fantasy News

  • Kevin Knox
    SF, New York Knicks

    Coach Fizdale told the Knicks players that no starters have been determined and players had to earn their minutes.

    Kevin Knox will battle with veteran Marcus Morris for the starting small forward spot. Knox has been working on getting his body stronger to be able to take on more contact on drives to the basket. Last season as a rookie, he averaged 12.8 points on a putrid 37 percent from the field. Knox will look to get more looks closer to the basket and increase his field goal percentage to more respectable levels. Knox provided little else outside of points and rebounds last season and will need to improve his shooting and defense to be considered a standard-league player.

    Source: New York Post

  • Bol Bol
    C, Denver Nuggets

    According to Nick Kosmider of The Athletic, Bol Bol could spend his entire rookie season in the G-League.

    Bol Bol was not drafted to be an immediate impact player, but just fell too late fore the Nuggets liking. The 44th overall pick needs to bulk up and show that he could take the bumps and bruises before having his chance on the big stage.

    Source: Nick Kosmider of The Athletic

  • Kawhi Leonard
    SF, Los Angeles Clippers

    After speaking with Doc Rivers and Lawrence Frank, Dan Woike's takeaway is that Kawhi Leonard's "load management" will not be as strict as it was last year.

    It was reported in July that Kawhi said he wants to play all next season fully and approach load management on a game-to-game basis so this is further confirmation that he will most likely play more than the 60 games he played last year but surely won't play all 82 either. Kurt Helin of NBC Sports speculates that this could be for several reasons. One could be that Leonard can take on more now that he is a little healthier while he believes the Clippers might also limit his per-game minutes to help him play more games. The other idea is that because the Western Conference is so deep, the Clippers will not be able to get a good seed if Leonard sits too many games. Fantasy wise, Leonard finished last season seventh in per game value but 18th in total value since he played only 60 games. Near the top of the second round would be a great place to snag him if he plays around 70 games this season.

    Source: Dan Woike on Twitter

  • Malik Beasley
    SG, Denver Nuggets

    The Nuggets want to extend Malik Beasley and Juan Hernagomez before the October 21 deadline.

    The Nuggets already locked up one of their 2016 first-round picks (Jamal Murray) to a long-term deal and now want to do the same with their other two 2016 first-round picks, Hernangomez and Beasley. If not, the two will likely become restricted free-agents at the end of the season. Both players saw stretches of big minutes last season due to injuries but at full health, Beasley was around 20 minutes per game while Hernangomez was at around 10. Fantasy wise, neither player puts up big defensive stats but Beasley is a very efficient shooter with low turnovers, knocking down 2.0 triples per game last year, putting him near top-150 value at only 23.2 minutes per game. Hernangomez is a decent rebounder and knocked down 0.9 triples per game but he would need closer to 30 minutes per game to be a factor in standard leagues.

    Source: Denver Post

  • OG Anunoby
    SF, Toronto Raptors

    Coach Nick Nurse intends to put OG Anunoby "back out there in a primary role."

    With Kawhi Leonard vacating the starting small forward spot, Anunoby is the leading candidate to take the role. Before the arrival of Leonard, Anunoby started 62 games in his rookie season. Last season he started 6 out of 67 games, and missed the entire playoffs due to an emergency appendectomy. He averaged 7.0 points, 2.9 rebounds, 0.7 assists, 0.7 steals and 0.3 blocks over 20.2 minutes per game, while shooting 45.3 percent from the floor, 33.2 percent from 3-point range and 58.1 percent from the free-throw line. He can be picked up as a late round flier in drafts.

    Source: The Athletic

  • Daryl Macon
    PG, Miami Heat

    The Heat have signed Daryl Macon.

    Macon getting picked up by another NBA squad after a solid Summer League campaign is not a shocker. If he were to crack the rotation he would post a nice assist rate, but it is unlikely Macon will be getting playing time unless something goes terribly wrong for the Heat this season.

    Source: NBA

  • Tahjere McCall
    F, Atlanta Hawks

    The Hawks signed Tahjere McCall from their Summer League team.

    This is just a depth signing for the Hawks. He shouldn't see much court time on the NBA floor if he makes the main roster out of camp

    Source: Kevin Chouinard on Twitter

  • Thabo Sefolosha
    SF, Houston Rockets

    Marc Stein is reporting that the Rockets will sign Thabo Sefolosha.

    Sefolosha was among the names at a recent mini camp, and he should make for a nice fit as a defensive stopper off the bench. The Rockets have a pretty thin group of reserves so we'd expect Sefolosha to be a regular rotation player, which puts him on the board as a steals specialist in deep leagues.

    Source: Marc Stein on Twitter

  • Tyler Zeller
    C, Denver Nuggets

    The Nuggets have signed C Tyler Zeller to the training camp roster on Thursday.

    Zeller played all of six games last season with the Hawks and Grizzlies. Zeller will try to latch on as a third-string C for the Nuggets' deep frontcourt. Zeller is off the fantasy radar.

    Source: Chris Dempsey on Twitter

  • Luke Kennard
    SG, Detroit Pistons

    Coach Dwane Casey said that he is not sure if he will start Luke Kennard or have him run a lot of the second-team offense.

    In addition, Casey mentioned that Kennard dealt with some knee tendinitis earlier this summer. Kennard is likely competing with Bruce Brown Jr. for the starting two-guard spot. We'll see how the rotation starts to shape in the preseason, but both players will get minutes either way.

    Source: NBA