Articles | Game Preview

Kings vs. Rockets Preview: Crashing to Earth

Both of these teams suck... Let's see who sucks less!

I'm not going to blame the pandemic's ability to warp time or my own busy schedule of late, but has it really already been a week since I've had to sit down and think about the Sacramento Kings playing basketball? I... I thought I had more time. Seeing as how I don't - The Kings are in Sacramento and taking on one of the two teams in the West that are worse than they are.

If it were up to me, I'd stop the preview right there. This could be a Grampa Simpson hat rack gif moment come to life. I walk into the preview, drop the fact that 24 of the last 26 games these two teams have played have ended in losses for them, pick up my hat and walk out the door, ready to enjoy the rest of my day, sans all thoughts of cellar dwellers. Instead, I'm going to get to spill facts on a team that has lost thirteen straight and quietly hope for the Kings to be their slump buster, for no other real reason than I'll be damned if Tillman Fertitta has a better shot of seeing Cade Cunningham in his jersey than we do.

Only 36 games to go.... Let's talk Kings basketball!

When: Thursday, March 11th, 7:00 PM PST

Where: Golden 1 Center, Sacramento, CA

TV: NBCSCA -  Mark Jones on the call.

RadioKHTK Sports 1140 AM

For Your Consideration

Like Any Good Christian Wood: I feel bad for Stephen Silas in a way that's hard to describe. Like, he's still making gobs of money to coach basketball, but man did the basketball gods not make it easy on him this first season in Houston. Brought in to coach a dark horse contender for a championship, Silas saw the exchange of Russell Westbrook, then the pouting and eventual removal of franchise icon James Harden from the team in an incredibly short amount of time. He's juggling an entirely new cast of players on this team with very little familiarity with each other and one of the two new building blocks, Victor Oladipo, has turned down their contract extension offer and is now on the block himself.

Christian Wood, the worst kept secret in the NBA prior to this season, has fully broken out and is now the guy that all the casuals at the office (if you still had an office) have said they've been calling a star for awhile now. He's great and a real tool for Houston to have on that contract moving forward and, well, he's been injured for a decent portion of the season and won't be back tonight. In fact, a bunch of players aren't rocking and rolling tonight. Kings killer, Eric Gordon is out with a knee. Like most of his career, Dante Exum is out with something. Rodion Kurucs, Danuel House, and David Nwamba - all out.

I'm not going to jinx this by listing the players the Kings are getting back and finally healthy, but that rookie everyone raves about is good to go. In fact, besides the previously known injuries to a young, body slammed center and a G-League firebrand, the only basketball player currently out for the Kings is a guy who's closing in on a month of COVID protocols.... I avoided names. We're safe from the reverse jinx.

Tonight's game against the Rockets is going up tempo and high scoring. While the rust will be there from a week off, the Rockets aren't going to suddenly go away from what they've been doing all season - they run at the 3rd highest pace in the NBA and pray to all that is good that their shots are falling. Boy, do I mean shots. Despite being the worst three point shooting team in the league in terms of percentages, the Rockets launch 40 a contest, the third highest mark in the league. Now that's kind of expected to be the case with a team that had planned for James Harden to be the sun in which the revolved around, but on the other hand, the price of official NBA backboards aren't cheap, especially for Tillman Fertitta, and the Rockets are smacking them of the rim at an alarming rate. Some other items to throw at you for context in this game - the Rockets are the third worst rebounding team in the NBA, they're third lowest in assists, attempt the tenth most free throws but are bottom seven in percentage. They're bad! They do most stuff, fairly badly!

Speaking of something on the other end of the universe from bad, it's my pleasure to announce that we have a new writer and teammate here at The Kings Herald! We spoke to a good number of people, read a lot of fantastic writing and tonight, win or lose, we'll have a recap from our newest member and a stand out from the crowd: Mirann Tsumura. Mirann's a 28-year old Sacramento native and a life-long Kings fan, a civil engineer by day and had started up her own personal blog about the Kings during the bubble last year before joining us. Now, to the reasons why I tried to have her fired this morning: she's not a fan of gold in jerseys and also said that I "had to see" the film Lady Bird. Sadly, Greg said that wasn't grounds for dismissal, but if I have any say, she's on notice!

We are all greatly looking forward to reading her work here, as should all of you! Please join me in giving Mirann a welcome today and feel free to pester her in the recap tonight!

Prediction

Trying to impress the one writer at The Kings Herald that isn't entirely jaded, the Kings reel off their first big time win this season. A rested Fox runs circles around John Wall, Victor Oladipo pouts that he's only the second best trade asset on the market behind Buddy Hield and Tyrese Haliburton drops 20 points, 8 assists to remind everyone who the people's champ for Rookie of the Year is. Mirann wins a Pulitzer for her recap and leaves for a much better opportunity this weekend!

Kings: 127, Rockets:110

 

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Peja
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March 11, 2021 11:00 am

Welcome Mirann! Excited to read your work!

TheKingsGuard
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March 11, 2021 11:50 am
Reply to  Peja

Ditto! Welcome Mirann and looking forward to your recap tonight!

Kosta
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March 11, 2021 11:12 am

 said that I “had to see” the film Lady Bird.

Mirann, Klam and I have your back! Don’t let up on this issue. Will needs some peer pressure.

And congratulations on the new gig with TKH!
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ZillersCat
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March 11, 2021 11:23 am
Reply to  Kosta

Yada Yada Yada ..
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Kosta
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March 11, 2021 11:58 am
Reply to  ZillersCat

The Big Tomato > The Big Apple

Last edited 1 year ago by Kosta
Klam
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March 11, 2021 12:32 pm
Reply to  Kosta

I can vouch with Kosta that I will consistently bug Will to watch Lady Bird until he does it. 😀

Kosta
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March 11, 2021 11:14 am

Beat the Rockets, man!
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andy_sims
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March 11, 2021 11:28 am

Welcome, Mirann!

A civil engineer! Given that the team is both rebuilding and creating a road map to move forward, this can only help.

Kosta
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March 11, 2021 11:56 am
Reply to  andy_sims

The Kings Herald could use some more civility.
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andy_sims
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March 11, 2021 12:11 pm
Reply to  Kosta

Get bent.

Klam
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March 11, 2021 12:31 pm
Reply to  Kosta

They need more shrubberies.

Kosta
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March 11, 2021 11:53 am

For film recs, how about Logan’s Run, which was filmed inside the Houston Hyatt Regency?

Only we re-title it “HARRISON’S RUN”, as we watch some Kings fans chase Harrison Barnes and try to kill him before he turns 30.
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Klam
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March 11, 2021 12:31 pm
Reply to  Kosta

Have you seen the film Minari yet? I just watched it a couple days ago…I highly recommend it!

Kosta
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March 11, 2021 12:39 pm
Reply to  Klam

Not yet. We’ve been watching Cobra Kai all day everyday.

Will put it on the list, thanks!

RocklinRoll
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March 11, 2021 1:51 pm
Reply to  Kosta

I’d go with Urban Cowboy.
Its hard to go wrong with a movie where mechanical bull riding is a central plot point.

Kosta
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March 11, 2021 2:46 pm
Reply to  RocklinRoll

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Klam
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March 11, 2021 12:25 pm

Welcome Mirann! I think you have a great taste in movies!
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Klam
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March 11, 2021 12:27 pm

OT: Can you believe exactly one year ago today these things happened? It literally doesn’t feel that long ago at all; maybe because we’ve been stuck inside so the year has flown by faster.

Kosta
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March 11, 2021 12:37 pm
Reply to  Klam

Also on this day in history:

2011: Fukushima Nuclear Disaster
2004: Train bombs in Madrid
1888: Great Blizzard hits the East Coast
1861: Confederate constitution adopted by some states

BigDrewbot
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March 11, 2021 12:49 pm
Reply to  Kosta

Kangz can even screw up good news/bad news

dropgate
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March 11, 2021 12:37 pm
Reply to  Klam

I was at G1C that night. Pretty surreal.

20200311_193747.jpg
2018DraftTimeMachine
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March 11, 2021 11:48 pm
Reply to  dropgate

Thanks a lot, Rudy. I remember sitting down to watch that game, thinking it was weird, then it got weirder … I was thinking, man, I hope this thing goes away by summertime.

richie88
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March 11, 2021 5:49 pm
Reply to  Klam

Given that March-July 2020 felt like the slowest stretch of my life, it feels like it was a lot more than 1 year ago.

Klam
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March 11, 2021 6:01 pm
Reply to  richie88

Yeah, other than The Last Dance, there was nothing sports wise for me to watch in that time period.

Jman1949
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March 11, 2021 12:36 pm

Can’t believe that our team’s still the same,
Coming into tonight’s home game!
First up on the docket’s
Contesting the Rockets
With a thirteen-game loss streak they claim!

BestHyperboleEver
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March 11, 2021 1:09 pm

One good thing about tanking is that I don’t have to root for the Rockets on my fantasy team to do well, but not TOO well.

ForKingsandCountry
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March 11, 2021 1:12 pm

I am annoyed that Christian Wood, who said he was feeling good a couple weeks ago, who has been practicing in full isn’t playing tonight because of “conditioning, is still out tonight against the Kings. This hurts both of my fantasy teams and it makes it more likely the Kings will win. You vex me Rockets. I am vexed.

BestHyperboleEver
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March 11, 2021 1:33 pm

Yep. I have in in the TKH fantasy league.

TheGrantNapear
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March 11, 2021 1:09 pm

Critical tank game.
Blow it up!

RikSmits
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March 11, 2021 1:16 pm

Welcome Mirann, I hope you can kick off your TKH career with a recap of a win, tank be damned!

TerzoM
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March 11, 2021 2:20 pm

Welcome Mirann!
Speaking of gold, did anyone bought these jerseys back in the day? 😀comment image

Last edited 1 year ago by TerzoM
Kosta
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March 11, 2021 2:48 pm
Reply to  TerzoM

I don’d mind the gold. It’s that terrible stripe on the the one side.

MichaelMack
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March 11, 2021 2:56 pm
Reply to  Kosta

did they only make them in Oliver Miller’s size?

Kosta
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March 11, 2021 3:06 pm
Reply to  MichaelMack

Ha, that too!

I like how Tyrese wears shorter shorts.

Klam
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March 11, 2021 3:04 pm
Reply to  Kosta

Symmetryyyyyyyy

andy_sims
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March 11, 2021 5:12 pm
Reply to  TerzoM

This is what wealthy people who lack class think is classy.

Nothing has ever been close to being this bad. Even Nike can’t top it, and not for lack of effort.

CoreyBrewersD
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March 11, 2021 6:10 pm
Reply to  CoreyBrewersD

Boo Hoo

Last edited 1 year ago by CoreyBrewersD
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March 11, 2021 11:49 pm
Reply to  TerzoM

Unless I’m mistaken, that’s like a four guard lineup and Artest.

Marty
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March 11, 2021 2:25 pm

These next 6 games or so are absolutely critical if the Kings want to try and overcome Houston, Orlando, and Detroit. Every win is HUGE right now, no turning back.

Adamsite
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March 11, 2021 2:43 pm
Reply to  Marty

I was really hoping Monte was going to pull the trigger on some trades that might help the tank. Now I worry about some needless wins for the rest of March. Pretty soft schedule until the deadline.

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March 11, 2021 2:44 pm
Reply to  Adamsite

Adding…Houston knows how to tank

TerzoM
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March 11, 2021 3:41 pm
Reply to  Adamsite

Don’t underestimate the Kangz! 😀

keith_kar
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March 11, 2021 3:30 pm
Reply to  Adamsite

It is a bit surprising Monte hasn’t pulled the trigger yet. Hopefully something is it the works, like a Barnes/Bjelly package deal for an asset and future picks.

TerzoM
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March 11, 2021 3:40 pm
Reply to  keith_kar

Ainge said no rush to use TPE, so Barnes may be with us rest of season

SelecaoKOJ
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March 11, 2021 4:46 pm
Reply to  TerzoM

Barnes is going somewhere.
Just not Boston.

I see a number of teams that could really could use a Barnes for the stretch run: Denver, NY, Memphis, And Miami come to mind. All those teams have a number of young players.

kings4ever
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March 11, 2021 5:13 pm
Reply to  SelecaoKOJ

Barnes is not going anywhere, but lets see who’s right. Hint, its not you 😉 If I am wrong I will fess up but I won’t be. Look at our roster, it is deplete of versatile wings, except HB. A GM creates more problems than he solved ridding himself of the one known commodity he has there.

And as terrible as our defense is, he gets appreciably worse less Barnes!
If you want to wheel and deal, as do I, then Marvin is your guy. That guy may want to keep an overnight bag packed, though even with Marvin no one is backing up the truck for his services.

This sort of gets into the weeds, but if I am the GM I want to know the training progress Bagley has made. All the data is charted and tracked. I don’t think Bagley has improved his physique, despite James Ham saying he is one of the hardest workers on the team.

Bagely will not be a good NBA player unless he adds 15-20 pounds of muscle, and if I am the GM I want to know what kind of progress he has made since becoming a pro, the injuries that hindered his training, and how viable it is he reaches strength targets that are going to enable to hold his position on the floor.

The training data will reveal too if he is a hard worker or indication he is a bit of a slacker, and this is data a GM must know before deciding to hold on or get rid of him.

andy_sims
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March 11, 2021 5:16 pm
Reply to  kings4ever

If you’re wrong, you won’t need to admit it. I’ve replied to the post so that it’s locked from edits.

Has anyone who ever said “TOLD YA SO” not deserved a punch in the mouth?

andy_sims
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March 11, 2021 5:14 pm
Reply to  keith_kar

The deadline is two weeks away. Why are people surprised that no trade has happened?

I mean, you can feel anxious about it, if that helps.

SelecaoKOJ
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March 11, 2021 4:51 pm
Reply to  Marty

Kings don’t exactly have the advantage in any of those 6 games. Atlanta is playing much better with a new coach. The Hornets will have Hayward and Devonte back. Washington is still fighting for a playoff spot in the East. Celtics are on a winning streak. They will have Smart back in the lineup. Sixers you can pencil in as an auto loss.

2-4 is realistic. Maybe they split the next 6. I think they’ll still be 8 games under by the deadline.

RORDOG
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March 11, 2021 2:47 pm

This feels like that Rockets game at the end of the season back in 2018 when the Kings got a pointless victory against a Rockets team that pulled all their starters.

(the funniest part about that is that winning that game basically lead to the Kings getting the #2 pick)

Adamsite
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March 11, 2021 2:51 pm
Reply to  RORDOG

I guess it wouldn’t have mattered that much. Bagley very likely could have been there at #7.

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March 11, 2021 11:52 pm
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Bagley is the guy we always draft at 7 … we just happened to draft him at 2, ahead of Luka.

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March 11, 2021 3:19 pm
Reply to  RORDOG

Feeling pretty good about my streaming pickups of Kevin Porter Jr and Patton for tonight’s game.

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March 11, 2021 3:06 pm

OT: This is great news. The Kings now have Guy and Metu for the playoffs.

Bill2455
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March 11, 2021 3:21 pm

Monte’s hands on both teams.

Bill2455
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March 11, 2021 3:22 pm

By the way why do you think NBA All Star game viewership plummeted?

Adamsite
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March 11, 2021 4:00 pm
Reply to  Bill2455

Because every day more and more people are cutting the cord and shifting to on demand viewership. One of the major sports streamers, Fubo, doesn’t even carry the Turner Networks, which aired the all-star game. All major sports viewership have gone down along with all cable network programming.

I was just reading an article the other day about how cable subscriptions have decreased by 25M since 2012, while the population has continued to grow. I know of quite a few friends who have gone off cable during 2020 because they were home streaming so much more. There is also just so much more out there than there was just 10 years ago. More variety, accessibility, and focused interest programming that is on demand makes for a more scattered viewership.

Bill2455
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March 11, 2021 7:50 pm
Reply to  Adamsite

Your ten year trend does not address the YTY spectacular drop. That accurate answer is that players today are much less likable.

BuffaloDiaspora
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March 11, 2021 4:15 pm
Reply to  Bill2455

High profile players saying directly, out loud that they didn’t want to be there and the game was stupid probably didn’t help draw in viewers.

Otis
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March 11, 2021 4:55 pm

And yet, it did extremely well with the younger demographic.

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March 11, 2021 5:04 pm
Reply to  Otis

Oprah-palooza it is then (my wife certainly had the main TV commandeered)

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March 11, 2021 4:47 pm
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Tom Hardy Bait GIF - Find & Share on GIPHY

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March 11, 2021 5:59 pm

Master style.

satdawg
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March 11, 2021 6:43 pm

So who really came up with Reese’s passes. Was it from here? Cause even Reese’s gave him a shoutout

Jmc220
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March 11, 2021 7:05 pm
Reply to  satdawg

So I had one pop into my head that’s better. Tyrese Hellaballin. I think it needs to happen

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March 11, 2021 7:01 pm

“What the Miranns need to know…”

Welcome to TKH

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