• The Sacramento Kings return home following a two-game roadtrip Tuesday night and will prepare to face the Dallas Mavericks.  Both teams are currently lottery-bound, but both will also want to see if they can get some positive momentum heading into the offseason.

    The second half of the season has been tough for the Kings, but their have been plenty of positive signs in recent games.  Two great wins over the Clippers and Timberwolves showed the competitiveness that the team still has despite losing out on a postseason spot, and gives the young players a great example of how to win in the NBA.  While winning more games would be nice, it’s mostly important to build a foundation for next season.

    The Mavericks are in a similar situation, and already have a few players that they would like to build with.  Harrison Barnes signed a large contract with the team in the offseason, and has made good strides in his first year with Dallas.  Others like Seth Curry, Yogi Ferrell and Nerlens Noel have shown that they can contribute as well.

    Here are some notes heading into the matchup:

    • Seth Curry can be a dangerous scorer for the Mavericks, putting up points from all over the floor in a hurry while also dishing out a few assists.  Containing Curry will be a tall order for whoever matches up with him, and slowing him down would go a long way towards getting the win.  Hield, who will likely spend a decent amount of time guarding Curry, is very active as a defender but is still learning on that end of the floor.
    • Willie Cauley-Stein has been much better on the glass over his last few games, and will find himself with another opportunity to show his improvements against Nerlens Noel.  Noel is a very active rebounder for the Mavericks, and will be a big test for Cauley-Stein.  Cauley-Stein has succeeded against tougher matchups in the past, but he has also had issues with consistency.

    Given how evenly-matched these two teams are, it wouldn’t be surprising to see this game stay close down the stretch.  Both teams have demonstrated that they have no interest in tanking for lottery positioning, so the game should be very competitive.

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