December 28, 2016, 12:26 pm
The Sacramento Kings head north to Portland Wednesday for a rematch with the Trailblazers. The Kings and Blazers have had some great battles this season, so this game should be fairly exciting.
Last time these two teams faced each other, DeMarcus Cousins went off for 55 points in what was likely the best game of his career. The Sacramento Kings ended up with a 126-121 victory that night and have yet to lose since then. Meanwhile, the Trailblazers have struggled mightily, dropping their last six games.
Here are some notes heading into the matchup:
- There has been plenty of talk about a rivalry between DeMarcus Cousins and Meyers Leonard that seemed to reach a new height in their last game. Cousins has been the clear winner on the court to this point, and given the difference in talent, it is unlikely to see that change at any point. Despite that, Cousins will need to maintain his composure and continue his strong play. If that happens, the Kings should be in a good position to win.
- Damian Lillard will not be available tonight, so CJ McCollum will likely handle most of the point guard duties with Allen Crabbe filling in a shooting guard. The loss of Lillard should allow the Kings to focus more on McCollum, and that alone should help slow down the Blazers’ offense.
- The Kings struggled with turnovers last game, with 19 total against just 24 assists. Sacramento has been able to take care of the ball to this point in the season, but the team will want to stay on top of this as much as possible. Turnovers have been an issue for this team in the past, so it will be important to try and maintain the improvements that have been made this season.
The Kings will have the opportunity to win their fifth game in a row tonight, matching their best total from last year. The win would help give them a stronger hold on the eighth spot in the conference, and would also help solidify their recent progress. The Blazers won’t go be beaten easily, so Sacramento will need to stay sharp to leave with the victory.