Kings Face League’s Best In San Antonio: Game Preview


Feb 19, 2013; Sacramento, CA, USA; San Antonio Spurs point guard Tony Parker (9) controls the ball against Sacramento Kings point guard Jimmer Fredette (7) and center DeMarcus Cousins (15) during the fourth quarter at Sleep Train Arena. The San Antonio Spurs defeated the Sacramento Kings 108-102. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

The Sacramento Kings prepare to face a very talented San Antonio Spurs team that is coming off only its third home loss of the season.

The Spurs lost in overtime to the Phoenix Suns 105-101. The Spurs played a great game, but couldn’t close things out late in the fourth quarter, and allowed Phoenix to score 33 points in the period. San Antonio went 0-10 from the field in the overtime period.

The Sacramento Kings have seemed to play with a renewed sense of team in their last two games, and it is the first time since the 1986-87 season that the Kings have scored more than 125 points in consecutive games on the road. The Kings will look to continue their recent success and improved play as they face the leagues best team in San Antonio (45-14).

The Kings have found each other on the offensive end of the floor, and have passed the ball beautifully in their previous two games. The Kings have had 30 or more assists in their last two games, with their 33 assists against the Hea,t a season high.

The Kings improved floor spacing and willingness to pass the ball and find the open man has allowed for shooters John Salmons and Marcus Thornton to get better looks. Thornton and Salmons have taken advantage of their opportunities and have rewarded their team with big offensive outings in Miami and Orlando.

Thornton is shooting 50 percent from the field averaging 18.4 points in his last five games. Salmons has shot the ball very well from beyond the three point arc in his last four games shooting 15-20.

The Kings will need to pressure Tony Parker who is dealing with a nagging arm injury. Parker has averaged 27 points in his last eight games, and is often a major reason the Spurs win games.

Parker had 30 points and 11 assists against the Kings last week, and simply out played Tyreke Evans who scored 23 points. Evans however is averaging 19 points in his last seven games, and has begun to play like the player the Kings need him to be.

The Kings are a younger team, that is very capable of out running the Spurs. The Spurs present several problems for almost every team in the league when they slow the tempo of the game down. Look for the Kings to push the tempo early and convert easy baskets in the fast break. If the Kings shoot the ball as well as they have in their last two games, they could run San Antonio right out of the building.