Kings Look to Stay Hot Against Nuggets: Game Preview


March 30, 2011; Denver, CO, USA; Sacramento Kings power forward DeMarcus Cousins (15) attempts to pass the basketball while being defended by Denver Nuggets power forward Kenyon Martin (4) and center Nene Hilario (31) during the first quarter at the Pepsi Center. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports

The Sacramento Kings prepare to face the Denver Nuggets in the second of a back to back for the Nuggets after playing Atlanta. The Kings will be in the first game of their own back to back against the five and six-seeded Western Conference playoff contenders.

The Kings came out and showed a lot of resolve as they sufficiently handled the Charlotte Bobcats. However, the Denver Nuggets are a completely different team, who have evened the Sacramento-era record at 56 a piece after winning the last seven straight games. The Kings have seemed to have particular amounts of troubles when they play the athletic Nuggets.

Sacramento has shown their ability to play as a team in 3 of the last 4 games and will need a complete team effort to beat the Nuggets. The Kings have to play with a defense first mentality, as they continue to learn the good defense will lead to easy buckets in transition.

The Kings will need to find each other and remember that John Salmons only had such an incredible  third quarter after missing five of his 3 point attempts in the first two quarters. But his teammates kept looking for him, and Salmons found his stroke. The Kings have shown they are capable of winning games on both the defensive on offensive side of the floor, but must continue to play tough defense and try and push the tempo against teams.

The Nuggets are 4-17 when teams score 100 or more points on them in road games. The Kings will need to play as a team and find the hot hands if they want to score more than 100 points against a very tough defensive Denver team.

The Kings starting unit has all shown its capable of passing the ball well, and Isaiah Thomas will need to take it upon himself to be a floor leader and true point guard as he needs to be the one to initiate the Kings offense and find his open teammates. Tyreke Evans, DeMarcus Cousins, and John Salmons have shown they are more than capable passers, and will need to help their young point guard as they continue to move the ball and score easy baskets.

Marcus Thornton has been on a scoring tare in his last seven games, and has shot the ball very efficiently. Thornton has started to look like he is accepting his role off the bench, as he has quickly seen that few teams have bench players who can guard him. The Kings need his scoring and playmaking to win tonight.