November 3, 2016, 10:46 am
After tough losses on back to back nights against the Atlanta Hawks and the Miami Heat, the Sacramento Kings travel to Orlando Thursday night looking to right the ship against the Magic. Orlando is fresh off of their first win of the season against the Philadelphia 76ers.
The two losses certainly weren’t promising, but Sacramento has been able to maintain their renewed effort on both ends of the floor, so there is reason to think that this team will be able to compete with regularity going forward. There are obvious issues, but many of them should be both expected and correctable given the changes that occurred this offseason.
Here are some notes heading into the action:
- The Kings have struggled to score much outside of Rudy Gay and DeMarcus Cousins. Considering the issues that Orlando has had this season, this game should be a good opportunity for Sacramento to see who can step up outside of those two.
- Willie Cauley-Stein’s role appears to be diminishing, with him failing to play at all in the game against Miami. Matt Barnes has played really well to this point, and that has obviously cut into his minutes quite a bit. He and Omri Casspi were both much larger parts of last year’s team, so it will be interesting to see if they can carve out larger roles for themselves going forward.
- The Orlando Magic have struggled mightily this season, ranking 29th in points per game and 17th in points allowed per game. With Orlando still figuring things out under new head coach Frank Vogel, the Kings should be able to take advantage and leave with a win.
The Kings will need to take capitalize on Orlando’s early season struggles to avoid losing three straight to start their first extended road trip of the season. If this team hopes to end their current playoff drought, then these are the types of games that they need to start winning.