SACRAMENTO -- In what should be a festive evening at Golden 1 Center, the Sacramento Kings host the Golden State Warriors on Bollywood night.
The Kings are coming off a loss to the Indiana Pacers on Thursday evening, but they brought effort and energy and made it a competitive game down the stretch. They are looking to become the first Western Conference opponent to defeat the Warriors three times in the regular season since the 2014-15 campaign.
Golden State has struggled with injuries for much of the season, but it appears they are getting at least one of their star players back on Saturday. Klay Thompson is probable after missing the previous eight games with a broken thumb. Steph Curry remains out with a knee issue, but the Warriors are starting to get healthy as the playoffs approach.
Warriors by 8.5
MATCHUP TO WATCH
De’Aaron Fox vs. Quinn Cook -- Cook had a breakout performance against Fox the last time these two teams faced off, dropping a then career-high 25 points filling in for Curry. Including his big night against Sacramento, the Warriors' two-way player is posting 20.6 points, 4.7 rebounds, 5.1 assists, 1.0 steals in 36.1 minutes over his last seven games. Fox is struggling down the stretch on both ends of the floor, but he showed a much better defensive effort Thursday against Indiana.
WHERE THEY STAND
Kings: 24-52, fourth place in Pacific
Warriors: 54-21, first place in Pacific
Kings: SF Garrett Temple (ankle) out, SF/SG Iman Shumpert (knee rehab/plantar fasciitis) out, PF Harry Giles (bilateral knee rehab) out until January.
Warriors: SG Klay Thompson (thumb) probable, SF Omri Casspi (ankle) doubtful, SF Andre Iguodala (knee) out, PG Steph Curry (ankle) out.
THREE THINGS TO WATCH
Struggling Warriors -- Golden State has dropped three straight games coming into Saturday’s matchup with Sacramento. They have already solidified themselves as the two seed in the Western Conference playoff race, but they need to find a way to get healthy and find a rhythm if they hope to compete for a second straight championship.
Put up a Fight -- The Kings keep plugging away. Most nights they are competitive, but it’s been a wild week in Sacramento and this could be a letdown game. Every chance they step on the floor it’s an opportunity to get better.
Willie Cauley-Stein Sighting -- After a string of quiet games, the Kings’ starting center showed up big time against Indy. Sacramento needs to see more 19-point, seven-rebound, five-assist nights from the third-year big, even in games that don’t matter in the standings.
The Kings surprisingly lead the season series 2-1 over the Warriors after knocking the Champs by a final of 98-93 at oracle earlier this month. Golden State holds a 201-188 lead in the all-time series and a 73-67 advantage during the Sacramento-era.