Inside the Scope: Sacramento Kings x Golden State Warriors
- Tip Off: 7:30 PM PST
- Television: CSNBayHD
Sacramento Kings Profile
- Offensive Efficiency: 102 (11th in NBA)
- Defensive Efficiency: 105.6 (23rd in NBA)
Scope the Opposition: Cowbell Kingdom.
Preview: After a defeat at the hands of the Los Angeles Clippers, the Golden State Warriors (1-1) will look to bounce back at home tonight against the Sacramento Kings (1-1).
The Kings are also coming off a defeat at the hands of the Clips, but still showed some good things in the contest. Sacramento scored 101 points on 45.6 percent shooting from the field against Lob City.
They got a stellar performance out of the tandem of DeMarcus Cousins and Isaiah Thomas, who combined for 53 points on 18-for-32 shooting.
The Kings’ offense has a different feel to it this season, which is a testament to new head coach Mike Malone. Instead of relying on isolations, post-ups and Cousins spotting up from 23 feet, Sacramento plays with more continuity.
They use cross screens, cuts as well as drive and kicks. Once upon a time, the Kings players came down the court and tried to utilize a borderline playground offense. Endless dribbles coupled with low-percentage shots were the norm.
Through two games, those habits have been corrected. There is no way to confirm whether this will last, but Sacramento’s offensive discipline is certainly entertaining.
Still, it’s worth noting that the roster is flawed. The Kings are a team of scorers put together with the hope that they can function as a unit. And by scorers, we are referring here to the players’ penchant for looking to put the ball in the basket; not necessarily accomplishing it at a high rate.
Indeed, the Kings only have three players converting over 40 percent of their shots. Three! The list is compromised of Thomas (63.6 percent), Greivis Vasquez (57.1 percent) and Boogie Cousins (48.9 percent). Everybody else on the roster has struggled.
The lack of specialization is the issue more than anything. Malone has diagrammed solid plays to get his guys open looks, but the players getting open looks are not exactly knockdown shooters. Still, at some point they will convert on these attempts given that they have not been heavily contested for the most part.
Until Sacramento starts hitting shots, they will live and die with Cousins. He is an extremely talented big man that seemingly dominates games at will whenever he is completely focused. However, he is known to play out of control and let his emotions dictate his game, which tends to negatively affect his game.
Tonight will be an extremely compelling matchup for Boogie. He will go head-to-head against Andrew Bogut, who has been known to get under the skin of some players. Cousins and Bogut are both quite foul prone and their availabilities will likely decide the contest.
The Dubs do not have anyone that can defend Cousins for the entire night other than the Australian. Thus, if foul trouble is an issue for him, the former Kentucky Wildcat will bully defenders on the interior for scores.
On the other hand, with Cousins riding the pine with fouls, the Kings’ offense might very well hit a drought. Keep in mind, the big man has accumulated nine fouls in two games, hence it’s not exactly a stretch to imagine him missing some time tonight because of this issue.
Exciting things tend to happen whenever the Kings and Warriors meet and there is no reason to expect anything different this time around.
Injury note: Harrison Barnes is scheduled to miss the contest against the Kings.
Questions or comments? Feel free to leave them in the comments section or you can contact me by email at JM.Poulard@Warriorsworld.net.