A short-handed Kings team will head to New Orleans to take on an even more short-handed Pelicans team Sunday at Smoothie King Center.
For the second consecutive game, Sacramento will be without their star guard De’Aaron Fox, who remains out due to personal reasons.
Fox's presence certainly was missed in the Kings' 107-104 loss to the Indiana Pacers on Friday. The 6-foot-3 guard is averaging 24.3 points on 50.6 percent shooting this season, along with 4.3 rebounds and 6.1 assists in 47 games.
Meanwhile, the Pelicans will face the No. 3 seeded Kings without multiple key players. Brandon Ingram is out with left toe soreness, Zion Williamson remains out with a hamstring strain and Dyson Daniels remains out with an ankle sprain.
Jonas Valanciunas is doubtful (right quad soreness) for New Orleans.
Ingram missed 29 straight games after sustaining a left toe injury on Nov. 25. This will be his second missed game since making his return to the court on Jan. 25.
The 6-foot-8 forward is averaging 21.2 points, 5.3 rebounds and 5.0 assists in 20 games this season.
Williamson, who missed the entire 2021-22 NBA season due to a foot injury, has continued battling injuries. His anticipated bounce-back season was put on hold when the 22-year-old sat out multiple games earlier this season due to a nagging foot injury.
He was again sidelined in December after being placed in the league's health and safety protocols. Williamson now has missed the Pelicans' last 17 games after sustaining a hamstring injury. The former No. 1 overall pick will be re-evaluated this upcoming week.
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New Orleans started the season 18-8, but they since have leveled off. Before their win against the Los Angeles Lakers on Saturday, they were on a 10-game losing streak and have struggled offensively.
Sunday's matchup will be a good challenge for both teams to see how well they can battle without their stars.