SACRAMENTO -- Searching for a win. The Kings have dropped five straight and haven’t picked up a win on their home floor since Feb. 5. They’ll face a Brooklyn Nets team that’s lost 13 of their last 15 coming into Thursday evening’s matchup at Golden 1 Center.
The Kings played well in Portland last game out, but stumbled down the stretch. Zach Randolph led the way with 20 points, but five players scored in double-figures, including a quality 17-point, 10-rebound double-double performance from Willie Cauley-Stein.
Brooklyn likes to get out and run. They have seven regulars averaging 10 points or more, with D'Angelo Russell leading the way at 15.8 points per game. Rebuilding a franchise without draft picks isn’t easy, but the Nets are doing their best with the hand they were dealt from previous management.
Nets by 2.5
MATCHUP TO WATCH:
Willie Cauley-Stein vs. Jarrett Allen -- Cauley-Stein is averaging 17.3 points and 10 rebounds a game over his last three. He needs to continue to work on his consistency, but he’s improved greatly in this arena throughout the season. Allen is getting an opportunity in Brooklyn and he’s taking advantage. The rookie big has scored in double figures in 12 of his last 15 games and his PER on the season is 18.3.
WHERE THEY STAND:
Kings: 18-43, fifth place in Pacific
Nets: 20-42, fifth place in Atlantic
Kings: SG/SF Iman Shumpert (plantar fasciitis) out, PF Skal Labissiere (right ankle sprain) probable, PF Harry Giles (bilateral knee rehab) out for the season.
Nets: PF Jahlil Okafor (left calf) out, PG Jeremy Lin (knee) out.
THREE THINGS TO WATCH:
Giving the Home Fans Something to Cheer About -- It’s been a rough season for the Kings, specifically on their home floor where they sport a 8-20 record at Golden 1 Center. Sacramento fans show up every night, it would be nice to see them get rewarded with a win now and then.
Watch for the Long Rebound -- Brooklyn shoots a ton of threes and they don’t make a lot of them. The Kings need to rebound as a team, including the guards. Long shots often produce long rebounds.
Go in Attack Mode -- Sacramento has sat at the bottom of the league in free throw all season and it’s only getting worse. They need to find a way to play with more force and attack their opponent.
The Kings hold a 1-0 advantage in the season series against Brooklyn after beating them at the Barclays Center on Dec. 20. The Nets hold a slim 32-30 lead during the Sacramento-era, but the Kings are up 48-38 all-time.