Kings

Gameday: Kings hit the road looking to snap four-game skid

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USATSI

Gameday: Kings hit the road looking to snap four-game skid

Following an embarrassing loss on their homecourt on Sunday afternoon, the Sacramento Kings traveled to Indiana where they’ll face the new look Pacers on Halloween night.

With George Hill and Zach Randolph resting, Washington jumped all over the Kings from the opening tip. The young core never responded, falling 110-83 to a quality Eastern Conference opponent. They’ll need a better effort from everyone involved if they hope to snap their four-game losing streak.

Indiana shocked the Spurs on Sunday, coming away with a 97-94 win at Bankers Life Fieldhouse. Six Pacers average double-figure scoring early in the season, including former Kings guard Darren Collison who is posting 14.3 points and eight assists per game as Indiana’s starting point guard.

BETTING LINE

Pacers by 5

MATCHUP TO WATCH

Buddy Hield vs. Victor Oladipo -- Hield is struggling with his shot early in the season, knocking down just 37 percent from the field and 25 percent from long range. He’ll need to find his offensive game if he hopes to keep up with the Pacers leading scorer. Oladipo is proving to be much more than just a consolation prize in the Paul George trade for Indiana. The 25-year-old shooting guard is off to a blistering start to the season, posting 25.5 points per game on 46.9 percent shooting from long range. 

WHERE THEY STAND

Kings: 1-5, fifth place in Pacific

Pacers: 3-3, third place in Central

INJURY REPORT

Kings: SG/SF Temple (rest) out, PF Zach Randolph (sore left foot) probable, PF Harry Giles (bilateral knee rehab) out.

Pacers: F/C Myles Turner (concussion) out, PF Domantas Sabonis (illness) questionable, SF Glen Robinson III (ankle) out.

THREE THINGS TO WATCH

SEARCHING FOR OFFENSE -- Sacramento has been hit and miss on the offensive end this season. They’ve topped a 100 points three times, but they’ve also dropped in 93, 79 and 83 point performances. Finding consistency with a young roster isn’t easy. The Kings need to push the tempo and get into their offense early. Sacramento is currently 28th in the league in scoring at 96 points per game and they rank 27th in offensive rating at 100.4.

FIGHTING THROUGH ADVERSITY -- De’Aaron Fox struggled for one of the first time this season, posting just two points on 1-of-8 shooting in his first NBA start. He wasn’t the only young player to come out cold in the Kings’ 27-point blowout loss to the Wizards. Most of the team came away with an ugly stat line. This is first time many of these players have lost five out of six games in their basketball careers. You either fight through it or allow losing to become the norm.  

AN OPPORTUNITY FOR MALACHI -- Malachi Richardson has sat quietly on the bench in three of the Kings’ for six games. It appears the second-year wing is going to get a chance to show what he can do as a reserve over the next few games. When his shot is falling, you can see the confidence grow in the 21-year-old wing. When he goes cold or is left out of the offense, he needs to find ways to stay on the court with his defense and rebounding.

SERIES HISTORY

The Pacers swept the Kings 2-0 last season, including an overtime win in Indiana late in January. Indiana holds a 46-39 lead over the Kings all-time and a 35-26 advantage during the Sacramento-era.

Kings' 2018-19 schedule has fewer back-to-backs, but start is road heavy

Kings' 2018-19 schedule has fewer back-to-backs, but start is road heavy

Basketball season is just around the corner. Well, maybe not. We’re still nearly five weeks away from the opening of training camp for the 2018-19 season, and the regular season doesn’t begin until mid-October. 

On Friday, the NBA announced the 82 game schedule for all 30 teams, including the Sacramento Kings, who will open the season at home Oct. 17 against Donovan Mitchell and the Utah Jazz.

Here are some of the nuts and bolts from this season’s campaign.

•    For the second season in a row, the Kings will play only one set of five-games-in-seven-nights, and that comes at the tail end of March and into early April. This is part of the NBA’s new plan of allowing players more time to rest. The league has eliminated the dreaded four-games-in-five-nights grouping from the schedule as well.

•    Sacramento will have 14 sets of back-to-backs, two shy of last season’s total of 16 sets. Of those 14 sets, one is home-and-home, seven are away-and-away, two are away-and-home and four are home-and-away.

•    After a balanced November and December schedule, the Kings will hit the road for their longest trip away from home in mid-January, stopping in Charlotte, Detroit, Brooklyn, Toronto, Memphis and Los Angeles (Clippers) from Jan. 17 to Jan. 27. 

•    The Kings’ longest homestand will be six games and come on the heels of their longest road trip. From Jan. 30 through Feb. 10, Sacramento will host the Hawks, 76ers, Spurs, Rockets, Heat and Suns at Golden 1 Center. 

•    Sacramento will play seven of its first 10 games away from Golden 1 Center. With plenty of new faces expected to see time in the rotation, the young Kings will have to learn on the fly while traveling around the NBA landscape.   

[RELATED: Five most intriguing games on Kings' 2018-19 schedule]

There are plenty of games to look forward to as well, beginning with opening night. There are old faces in new places and plenty of intrigue.

•    Sacramento will match up with the two-time reigning NBA champion Golden State Warriors four times this season. The initial battle is set for Nov. 24 at Oracle, with a follow-up three weeks on Dec. 14 at Golden 1 Center. The teams will meet again Jan. 5 at Golden 1 and then finish the series in the first game coming out of the All-Star break on Feb. 21. It likely won’t happen early in the season, but at some point, former Kings big man DeMarcus Cousins will make his debut as a member of the Warriors, which should be fun to watch.

•    The Kings will face off with the new-look Los Angeles Lakers four times as well, beginning on Nov. 11 at home. The Lakers have made substantial changes to their roster, including the addition of LeBron James. These teams will play each other again twice in late December before completing the series March 24 in L.A. 

•    Isaiah Thomas joined forces during the offseason with former Kings coach Michael Malone in Denver. Sacramento will play the Nuggets at the Pepsi Center on Oct. 23 and then again on Jan. 3 at Golden 1 Center and Feb. 13 back in Denver.

•    The Kings will have to wait until Dec. 4 to get their first look at No. 1 overall pick Deandre Ayton when they travel to Talking Stick Resort Arena to face the Suns. They’ll see No. 3 overall selection Luka Doncic on Dec. 16 when they stop over in Dallas for a game against the Mavs.

Below is the complete Kings 2018-19 schedule, with all times local to where the game is played:

Report: Lil Wayne is suing Kings guard Frank Mason III

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AP/USATSI

Report: Lil Wayne is suing Kings guard Frank Mason III

Second-year Sacramento Kings pro Frank Mason III is being sued by rap star Lil Wayne. Seriously. 

The 24-year-old guard is being sued for $92,000 and must give back his Young Money diamond chain, according to TMZ Sports.

Before the Kings selected Mason in the second round of the 2017 NBA Draft, Lil Wayne's agency, Young Money APAA Sports Group, signed the former Kansas star. The agency reportedly gave Mason $40,000 in advance, paid his pre-draft expenses which totaled $52,000 and gave him an $11,000 diamond chain. 

However, Mason's contract reportedly stated if he left the agency, Mason would have to repay the money and give back the chain. This past April, Mason left the agency. 

Mason signed a three-year, $4,181,147 contract with the Kings after the 2017 draft. He is guaranteed $2,562,627.