January 18, 2017, 10:21 am
The Sacramento Kings play their final game of the current seven game home stand Wednesday night, taking on the Indiana Pacers. This will be the first of two meetings for the two teams this season, and the only one at the Golden 1 Center.
For Indiana, this game represents an opportunity to improve their play on the road. The Pacers are 5-14 on the road this season, and would be in dramatically better position if they could get that number closer to .500.
Sacramento will be looking to improve their play in the Golden 1 Center, which has been fairly disappointing in recent weeks. The team is currently 1-5 in their last six home games, and enter play with an 8-12 record at the Golden 1 Center.
Despite the Pacers’ poor road record, they are above .500 overall and have the talent needed to be one of the top teams in their conference.
Here are some notes from heading into the game:
- Sacramento has struggled to defend the perimeter, and with plenty of shooters on the roster, Indiana will surely be looking to exploit that. Paul George will need to be constantly watched by whoever’s guarding him, and the same goes for Jeff Teague. Rudy Gay should be able to do a decent job on George, but it does not appear likely that Matt Barnes would match up physically or athletically. For that reason, Sacramento may want to avoid that pairing whenever possible.
- Indiana’s big men have plenty of mobility, so this may be a time to go with a smaller lineup more often than not. Kosta Koufos would be a good fit to guard Al Jefferson off the bench, but players like Willie Cauley-Stein and Anthony Tolliver may be the best bets to guard Myles Turner and Thaddeus Young.
- Ty Lawson has been listed as questionable heading into the game, so Sacramento may need to look for additional help on the perimeter. Malachi Richardson is raw, but he has certainly earned an opportunity to prove himself, and has the confidence and ability to create his own offense. Collison will see an increased role in that case, but the team will want another scorer on the floor when he sits.
The Kings will want to get some momentum going in their favor before heading out on a brutal road trip to end the month, so this game will be an important moment in the team’s race for the eighth spot in the conference. Indiana will be a tough opponent, but with the trade deadline slowly approaching, Sacramento will need to start winning these games.