Programming note: Warriors-Kings coverage starts tonight at 6:30 p.m. on CSN Bay Area with Warriors Pregame Live (territory restrictions apply) and streaming live right here
SACRAMENTO -- Even as the aches and pains piled up over the past couple weeks, the Warriors barely have skipped a beat. And now they’re in position to start getting healthy again.
They play only once during a five-day stretch, and that’s Saturday night in Sacramento against the Kings, who have lost four of five and haven’t beaten the Warriors in nearly four years.
The Warriors (43-7) will get forward Draymond Green back in the starting lineup after a one-game absence and it’s also likely guard Shaun Livingston, who has missed the past two games, will return.
The Kings (19-31) generally fight hard enough to be competitive but continue to search for a way to finish. Seven of their past eight games were decided by five or fewer points and they’ve managed to win three of them.
Warriors by 14
MATCHUP TO WATCH:
JaVale McGee vs. DeMarcus Cousins: After playing only four minutes when the teams met Jan. 8, McGee is certain to see a lot more of Cousins in this game. McGee will have to defend without fouling, which is pretty tough against Cousins, who has the deepest offensive arsenal of any center in the league. It’s pretty simple for the Warriors: Don’t let Boogie beat you.
Warriors: F Draymond Green (L shoulder contusion) is listed as available. G Shaun Livingston (mid-back strain) is listed as probable. C Zaza Pachulia (R rotator cuff strain) and F/C David West (L thumb fracture) are listed as out.
Kings: F Omri Casspi (R plantaris tendon strain), F Rudy Gay (L Achilles tear) and G Garrett Temple (R hamstring tear) are listed as out.
Warriors: 9-1. Kings: 3-7.
The Warriors won the first meeting this season, 117-106, on Jan. 8 and have won 13 in a row overall, including seven in a row in Sacramento.
THREE THINGS TO WATCH:
TEMPO CONTROL: The Warriors play at the second-fastest pace in the league, while the Kings are the fourth slowest. If the Warriors somehow get lulled into a slow-down game, it plays right into Sacramento’s hands. Though it’s highly unlikely, stranger things have happened.
OPPORTUNITIES APLENTY: The Kings rank 25th in field-goal percentage defense and 27th in overall defensive rating. And now their best defender, Garrett Temple, is out. The Warriors rank first in field-percentage offense and second on offensive rating. The math looks like money in favor of the Warriors.
ANDRE’S FEELING IT: Though Andre Iguodala is known more for his defense and smarts than his scoring, his shooting touch has been remarkable in recent games. He’s shooting 58.7 percent over his last 10 games, including 55.0 percent from 3-point distance.