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Kings vs Bulls Preview: Light the Beam or Get the Horns?

Back-to-back early games?! Give a guy a BREAK!

As fun as Saturday's victory in LA was, the Kings don't have much time to celebrate the trouncing of a Los Angeles Clippers squad sans their stars. The Chicago Bulls are in town and looking to buck out of an early season funk. On the bloody end of the baseball bat in seven of their last ten outings, the Bulls are a far cry from the 14-8 start that they had this time last season and even more alarming, fielding a healthy team to boot - sans the semi-permanently ducked Lonzo Ball. The Kings are a win this afternoon away from fully negating that three game Turkey Week droop with a three a winning streak to match it so let's not waste any more time building the hype - it's time for afternoon game: PART DEUX.

Let's talk Kings basketball!

When: Sunday, December 4th, 3:00 PM PT
Where: Golden 1 Center, Sacramento, CA
TV: NBC Sports California
Radio: Sactown Sports 1140

For Your Consideration

DeRozan For De Season: I've gotta say here that while not being in the upper echelon of teams I care about, I still find myself a bit disappointed in this Chicago Bulls squad. Last season, prior to injuries pretty much pushing their hype train off the tracks, they had a quiet little chunk of my heart. A group of supposed has-beens and never-quites all lumped together in an exciting, quirky team that looked like it could do some damage in the Eastern Conference playoffs. Arturas Karnisovas dug up enough dirt on Jerry Reinsdorf to get him to start writing checks and making decisions like a big boy franchise, went out and got DeMar DeRozan, paid a hefty toll for Nikola Vucevic, and rolled the dice on the health of Lonzo Ball in an attempt to build something immediate around Zach LaVine and for a brief moment in time, it all seemed to be working for them. Through the second half of December and into January of last season, they won 9 straight games and wound up with a rather sporting a 26-10 record.

Smash cut to today: Lonzo Ball has played in 35 total games for the Bulls, Zach Lavine's body continues to be spotted haunting the halls of various Chicago medical buildings, DeMar DeRozan and Vuc are there, holding it down the best they can, praying for the day that they all get back together and healthy, all while their own internal clocks tick down towards an unknown, ever-closer combustion date. Darkhorse championship aspirations of just a year ago, now morphed into a deep, unsettling fear that they might be going through all this just to surrender a Top-10 pick to the Orlando Magic.

This sucks because, honestly, the Bulls are a LOT of fun at times. Zach LaVine, a human torch with a legendary highlight reel. DeMar DeRozan went from down and out in San Antonio to putting on an MVP level season at 32. Nikola Vucevic was a workhorse in Orlando for YEARS, and can absolutely give you buckets on a given night.  Dosunmu and Pat Williams are great young talents, Alex Caruso is that pesky ass that every fanbase loves, Derrick Jones Jr. is always a threat to put your favorite team on the loser's end of the Dunk of the Year highlight reel - they're a loveable bunch!

[Lonzo's fun too obviously, I just need to see proof of life before I can really discuss him in the present tense here.]

I'll give you some things to watch for because yesterday's preview was very, very dry. The Bulls take the least amount of threes in the NBA and make them at the dead center middle ground of the the league, 35.3%. They're in the top-10 in pace, just below average in points per game and just above average in opponent points per game. They're 20th in rebounds, 15th in assists, 11th in both steals and blocks. They're a... perfectly average team in the NBA, with a below average record and above average top-end talent. This is a game that on paper the Kings should absolutely win, and every bit of my head and heart knows the Kangz might show up for instead. My therapist would call this thinking a normal response to repeated trauma. My therapist doesn't watch basketball and can shut up.

Prediction

DeMar DeRozan's god-like status from the mid-range gets tested by Davion Mitchell today, who hounds him into a bad shooting night. De'Aaron Fox and Zach LaVine go tit-for-tat on the scoring front and Keegan Murray vs. Patrick Williams becomes the match-up no one expected but we all enjoy. In the fourth quarter, Vuc and Domas collide and the sound it produces is used by folly artists for the next century any time they need to produce a "slab of beef dropped on a butcher block" sound effect.

Kings: 122, Bulls:109

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Kosta
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December 4, 2022 10:20 am

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RPO
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RPO
December 4, 2022 10:25 am
Reply to  Kosta

Ball even ducked Will’s preview!

Lonzo’s fun too obviously, I just need to see proof of life before I can really discuss him in the present tense here

AmateurNerd
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December 4, 2022 1:17 pm
Reply to  Kosta

Comment of the Year candidate

Jman1949
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December 4, 2022 10:20 am

Maybe last year’s results were deceiving
Or these Bulls are underachieving.
Though for us back-to-back,
Must win games in Sac.
We’ll light up the beam, I’m believing!

Kosta
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December 4, 2022 10:35 am
Reply to  Jman1949

♫ Don’t stop
…Beam-ing

Hold on to that Feelin’ ♫

Last edited 2 months ago by Kosta
Jman1949
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December 4, 2022 11:16 am
Reply to  Kosta

♫ A small-market team
Trying to fulfill the dream
All the writers say
Not goin’ anywhere

But with Fox and Ox
This year we’ll break out the box
Still the writers doubt
We’ll go anywhere

Don’t stop the beaming
Hold on to that feeling
Night sky, purple…♫

Last edited 2 months ago by Jman1949
Kosta
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December 4, 2022 10:24 am

So if the game ends around 5:30pm, and the sun sets at 4:45pm, the Beam should be lit soon after the game (post-game interview/button push) and be visible, yeah?

Last edited 2 months ago by Kosta
Adamsite
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Nostradumbass 14
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December 4, 2022 10:48 am

It’s true, on paper this Bulls team should be throttling teams, but they just can’t seem to get it together. They’re starting 3 legit all-stars, two of which can drop 40 on any given night. They have young promising talent in Pat Williams, Ayo, and White. They have a scrappy bench in Caruso, Jones Jr. and Dragic, but they still have only managed a 9-13 record. Ball being out sucks, but they should still be a better team then what their record shows.

PretendGhost
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December 4, 2022 12:05 pm
Reply to  Adamsite

In my experience, that usually indicates it’s a coaching issue. Last season they really stumbled to the finish line. I’m not a believer in Billy Donovan

Last edited 2 months ago by PretendGhost
RowJimmy
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December 4, 2022 12:16 pm
Reply to  PretendGhost

As a long time Kings fan I cannot be happier than with Mike, Jordi and the staff bringing joy back to Sacramento basketball.

RPO
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December 4, 2022 11:07 am

The Kings are a win this afternoon away from fully negating that three game Turkey Week droop with a three a winning streak to match it

So today the beam would be a balance beam.

Kosta
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December 4, 2022 11:35 am
Reply to  RPO

Haha–So many great puns and memes this year.

Beam memes?

RPO
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December 4, 2022 1:13 pm
Reply to  Kosta

It seems!

JoeEnzyme
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December 4, 2022 11:19 am

Me: Brings therapist to family gathering.
Therapist: Oh My God.

Kosta
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December 4, 2022 11:38 am

Just thinking again about how amazeballs it was to hear a loud chant of Light The Beam over the broadcast of the Clippers game at Crypto Arena.

Clippers fans were like:

“I just wanted to enjoy my team. Isn’t it enough that we have to share this arena with that silly yellow team already? Now there’s three teams owning this arena?”

Kingsguru21
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December 4, 2022 12:35 pm

Curious to see how the Kings come out against the Bulls and in particular De’Aaron. He’s had a few off nights in a row, I’m curious to see what type of energy he comes out with this afternoon.

Should be a fun game though. I think the Kings are the better team, but they have to play like it. Chicago, for as bad as they’ve played consistently, can beat you any given night. Just ask Boston, Milwaukee and Miami.

Go Kings!

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