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Kings vs Grizzlies Preview: Win and Bear It

The Kings six game win streak goes on the road to take on an injured but deadly Grizz squad.
By | 35 Comments | Nov 22, 2022

The Kings start off Turkey Week in Memphis, kicking off a three-games-in-four nights road trip around each side of Thanksgiving and hoping that on the other end of it lies a few more W’s. Western Conference Player of the Week De’Aaron Fox will have to square off against a limping Ja Morant and a Grizzlies squad that’s lost three of their last four. Can the Kings take advantage of an incredibly deep team not at full strength? Can we please find a way to See Jake LaRavia, David Roddy and Kenneth Lofton Jr on the floor at the same time? When will Memphis find it in their heart to lift the ban on me to their city because of the one and only time I had to defend Marvin Bagley so many years ago?

Let’s talk Kings basketball!

When: Tuesday, November 22nd, 2022, 5:00 PM PT
Where: FedEx Forum, Memphis, TN
TV: NBC Sports California
Radio: Sactown Sports 1140

For Your Consideration

Morant or Less?: I don’t have think I have to tell many of you this – the Grizzlies, the darlings of NBA Draft Twitter and holders of everyone’s sneaky favorite young players, are a damn good team. With TWELVE players having three seasons or less in the NBA, they’re loaded to the hilt with youthful talent at every single spot on their roster and yet still very much looking to win NOW. We could spend a paragraph talking about Ja Morant being injured or Desmond Bane being out or how Jaren Jackson Jr. might need a bit more time to come fully into himself after being out with a torn meniscus, but the fact of the matter is, I’m wary of this team regardless of who starts, who plays, who sits on their bench. Zach Kleiman has built a team that can truly claim “next man up” with a coach in Taylor Jenkins that’s smart enough to execute a winning strategy regardless of who he’s throwing out there. If Ja sits? Ty Jones is a fantastic back-up and more than capable of captaining the boat to a win. Jaren Jackson Jr. doesn’t have it? Okay, Steven Adams can plant himself in the paint. Santi Aldama is coming into own in a way that could surprise the Kings. Ziare Williams is their only true small forward, and he’s out with a knee injury, but they’ve got enough tweeners with guys like Dillon Brooks and Jake LaRavia that they’ll fill that void with relative ease.

For the Kings, tonight’s going to be about their play relative to the strength of their opponent. Though it’s completely unfair to expect perfection from a group of coaches and players that are a total of 15 games into gelling with one another, there’s also a level of psychological damage from the last 16 years of games that tells me I should still be nervous with the way they’ve played certain teams this year. Even during this win streak, the Kings have allowed teams to hang around far longer than they should before stepping on their throats in the fourth quarter. It’s a great alternative to years past, where the Kings were the team hanging tough before getting brushed off like dried shit on a shoe, but teams like the Lakers, Spurs and Pistons shouldn’t have been allowed to stay with Sacramento for as long as they did. Eventually a beatable team is going to hang around and right when the Kings expect that fourth quarter magic to come save them, the other team will turn the gas on and leave the Kings in the dust wondering how and why.

Again, these are good problems to have, or at least better than the issues of years past, but the Kings are playing a little fast and loose with playing fast and loose and in a Western Conference dogfight for playoff spots, a loss here or there because of a lack of focus could be the difference in making it or praying for ping pong ball.

Alright, some stats to watch for tonight. The Grizz are a middle of the road team from beyond the arc, 14th in the NBA at 36%. They’re 27th in the league in shooting inside the arc at 51.7% and take the fifth most from that range. They’re a fantastic rebounding team, second in the entire league while being the best in NBA at grabbing offensive boards. They don’t foul much, don’t turn the ball over much (8th and 11th in the NBA, respectively) and *right now* 13th in the NBA in Net Rating. They’re playing right around or just above what an average NBA team should do on a given night. That being said,  this team was the #2 team in the West last year for a reason – they’ll figure things out sooner or later. I’d just prefer that it wasn’t tonight against the Kings.

Prediction

The greatest offense in post-merger NBA History continues to roll. Sabonis gets the waves of big guys Memphis throws at him in foul trouble, Fox takes advantage of Ja’s bum ankle and attacks the rim all night and in Memphis, the only Ten-I-See is the number of three pointers Kevin Huerter has hit.

Kings: 124, Grizzlies: 111

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35 Comments
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Klam
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Nostradumbass 18
Nostradumbass 19
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Nostradumbass 18
Nostradumbass 19
November 22, 2022 10:46 am

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macdoogs
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November 22, 2022 2:32 pm
Reply to  Klam

Scare Bears

11z8mwhw0jxQiI.gif
TerzoM
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November 22, 2022 10:49 am

Reverse bear trap game.
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Jman1949
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November 22, 2022 10:52 am

Getting wins on the road’s always tough,
But the Griz injured list is so rough.
With no Ja and no Bane,
Their loss is our gain.
Let’s find out if we have the right stuff!

Gregoryl
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November 22, 2022 11:01 am

And the Kings are favored by 2?! I imagine that changes if Ja plays.

ForKingsandCountry
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November 22, 2022 11:39 am
Reply to  Gregoryl

Grizz are now favored by 1.5 so that seems like a decent indicator.

RikSmits
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November 22, 2022 11:27 am

There was a segment about the Kings on Dutch TV, stating that with two other teams struggling, they are the biggest surprise in the Bay Area.

Glowing review of their offensive output during the winning streak.

Last edited 1 year ago by RikSmits
Gregoryl
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November 22, 2022 12:15 pm
Reply to  RikSmits

Cue Carmichael Dave for the “Sacramento is part of The Bay Area” talk.

RikSmits
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November 22, 2022 12:19 pm
Reply to  Gregoryl

I wrote that on purpose to see who would take the bait. 😁
They actually said California. Most Dutch people would not know what the Bay Area is.

Kosta
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November 22, 2022 12:27 pm
Reply to  RikSmits

Well most Californians don’t know much about your country–Denmark.

😛
(ducks, runs for life)

andy_sims
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November 22, 2022 2:00 pm
Reply to  Kosta

(Rick laughs in full medical coverage and social safety net)

Kosta
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November 22, 2022 2:01 pm
Reply to  andy_sims

Sure, but I bet he has to pay for Tulips.

Last edited 1 year ago by Kosta
andy_sims
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November 22, 2022 3:03 pm
Reply to  Kosta

Probably not the only time he’s paid for two lips.

Gregoryl
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November 22, 2022 2:31 pm
Reply to  RikSmits

It is always one of my favorite Twitter threads

Dan Houlder
Dan Houlder
November 22, 2022 11:28 am

After underperforming last game, the Kings just might stomp the JaBaneless Grizz senseless tonight.

satdawg
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November 22, 2022 4:47 pm
Reply to  Dan Houlder

How lame, Grizz are scared

Kingsguru21
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November 22, 2022 5:00 pm
Reply to  satdawg

Ja is playing tonight, after all.

SneakerKing
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November 22, 2022 12:10 pm

If they box out consistently tonight, the Kings should win. If they allow JJJ, Steven Adams, and Brandon Clarke to play patty cake on the glass, it’s going to be a frustrating night unless the Kings shoot it well from deep.

Adamsite
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Nostradumbass 14
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November 22, 2022 12:30 pm

OT: Just thought I’d share the Kris Murray (Keegan’s twin brother) is putting up Keegan like numbers as a junior for Iowa. Through 4 games he’s averaging 23 and 8 to go with a 1 block per game, and shooting an insane 47% from three on 7.8 attempts. If he keeps this up he’s going to climb draft boards just like his brother did. With a quick survey of draft boards, he’s already a mid to late first round pick…right where the Kings may be drafting on their current pace.

RPO
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RPO
November 22, 2022 12:36 pm
Reply to  Adamsite

Glad that Keegs has a younger twin brother. Potential family reunion on the Kings for the Murrays at next year’s draft?

Henry
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November 22, 2022 1:46 pm
Reply to  Adamsite

I think a solid rookie year from Keegan would help boost his stock as well.

macdoogs
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November 22, 2022 2:25 pm
Reply to  Adamsite

I have been waiting for someone to bring this up! Kris *might* slip a bit due to age. Offensively, you couldn’t tell the brothers apart. Keegan may be the better defender of the two but 4 games in too early to tell. Having a starting and a bench Murray and the occasional double Murray would probably be really fun basketball. If he works like his brother does sign me up

Adamsite
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Nostradumbass 14
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November 22, 2022 2:55 pm
Reply to  macdoogs

And if one gets in foul trouble early…you just swap jerseys at halftime!

Kosta
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November 22, 2022 4:36 pm
Reply to  Adamsite

Knowing twins in general, I bet the brothers would do this anyway!

andy_sims
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November 22, 2022 12:36 pm

Ten-I-See. Genius stuff!

Think Len will get some floor time to wrestle with Adams? That big galoot is definitely going to make Sabonis work for boards, and Len at least has the size to bang a bit.

Adamsite
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Nostradumbass 14
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November 22, 2022 12:41 pm
Reply to  andy_sims

I’d love to see both Len and Holmes use up some of their 12 combined fouls to be physical on Adams and make him beat us from the line with his 23% FT.

andy_sims
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November 22, 2022 2:00 pm
Reply to  Adamsite

Hell yes!

RPO
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November 22, 2022 12:45 pm

Time to beat up these bears (sheesh… another city whose team name is an improper relo vestige… Jazz, L*kers).

This should be a telling game. A strong performance would show that we’re really for real.

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Last edited 1 year ago by RPO
RPO
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November 22, 2022 12:47 pm
Reply to  RPO

Hmm… not sure why that graphic link didn’t work.

Kosta
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November 22, 2022 1:56 pm
Reply to  RPO

To be fair, Sacramento isn’t known for kings. Unlike Rochester, New York; Cincinnati, Ohio; Kansas City–Omaha….who were known to be ruled by royals/kings.

Last edited 1 year ago by Kosta
Klam
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November 22, 2022 4:37 pm
Reply to  Kosta

Sacramento is known for kangz.

UpgradedToQuestionable
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November 22, 2022 1:14 pm

Have to be impressed with GM Zach Klieman- one heck of a roster and coaching staff he assembled – talented and strong – the Grizz have grit. If they stay healthy, you have to consider them championship contenders. They were awfully close last playoffs.

This is the part of the current season high that makes me, as a long time Kings follower – feel a cramp coming on. Six game win streak and then …. Losing streak ahead? Looking at the road schedule, it’s a real worry. With increased wins come increased expectations….

expectations are planned disappointments

It’s that part of surfing the high that has me worry about the crash. I don’t expect the Kings to go 76-6 however, we are enjoying wonderful ups and downs will be some downs and stumbles there as well.

andy_sims
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November 22, 2022 2:02 pm

I seem to recall that Dillon Brooks plays like a damned all-star against the Kings. I would like to put a stop to that.

macdoogs
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November 22, 2022 2:30 pm

Even without their stars this is still a playoff team that I hope we don’t overlook tonight. Jackson and Adams inside will still make life on Domas rough so hopefully the others step it up and play like we’ve been playing. Us starting hot out the gate recently has really set the tone for our win streak and I hope that continues.

Beam Team!!!!!

RowJimmy
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November 22, 2022 4:28 pm

Last year at G1C the Griz righted their ship in a beat down hopeful Kings. Now it is our turn to take care of business and win this outright to be taken seriously. Go Kings!

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