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Kings vs. Timberwolves Preview: A 10th Seed Showdown

The Kings are facing off against a Timberwolves looking to right the ship before it's too late. Hmm. Sounds a little familiar.
By | 39 Comments | Nov 17, 2021

Hey friends! Heard there was a game today and decided that my time sabotaging the Lakers franchise from within was a complete and total success, so I’m back and ready to lightly write about our Kings, in between random rants. How was LA, you ask? Oh it was great. Mongolian BBQ, relaxing walk on the beach with loved ones, nearly getting caught in the crossfire of a fight at Staples Center… I’m sorry.. I mean The Crypto.com Arena… while watching the Timberwolves go up 30 points on the Lakers – it was all I could ask for. Hey, speaking of the Timberwolves: the Kings have a game today in Minnesota! Will Sacramento stoop to the level of their competition? Can the Kings build on their blow out of the Detroit Pistons? Will Taurean Prince’s father read this and realize I was the Kings fan giving him the quiet go ahead to whomp the 12 drunk Lakers’ fans sitting next to me on Friday night? Let’s talk Kings basketball!

When: Wednesday, November 17th, 5:00 PM PST

Where: Target Center, Minneapolis, MN

TV: NBCSCA – Kyle Draper (play-by-play)

RadioKHTK Sports 1140 AM

For Your Consideration

Fox, KAT, Ants – Oh My: Going to just go ahead and throw this out there: Timberwolves have lost eight of their last nine games. That is never a good sign at any point of any season and while I’m not trying to carry any water for them because of any personal reasons (beating the Lakers the one game I rolled up to was a nice treat), I do have to say that a lot of these losses are against good to great teams. Sure you have an Orlando thrown in there, but the other losses were to the Nuggets, the Clippers three goddamn times, the Grizzlies, Warriors and, most recently, the Suns. That is an absolute GRIND of a stretch and I think those losses hide some of the dangers of this Wolves team. They might not necessarily be a good team yet (or ever), but they are talented and the Kings… the Kings will definitely let a talented but struggling team beat them up. Hell, they’ve done it three times this month with the Pacers, Spurs and to a lesser extent, the Thunder. The Timberwolves can go toe-to-toe with the Kings.

So lets get a little breakdown of what they do and don’t do well. They’re bottom eight in points per game, at just 103.8 a contest, and just below average at 18th in the league in opponent’s points per game at 108.2 a game so far this season. They’re first in the NBA in three points attempted per game: taking over 42 long balls a game. That is to say however they also don’t make a good percentage of them, shooting just 32.8% from deep. The attempts stat I just listed, that’s the one that as soon as I saw it and committed it to the preview, the universe flipped a coin on whether or not it would allow Minny to shoot 40% from deep or higher tonight. It’s the most Kangzy thing I can imagine and thus, if the Timberwolves get hot from deep tonight, I can earnestly say that it was my fault for pointing it out. They’re the second worst shooting team percentage wise from inside the arc, they take like, the fifth least amount of two pointers in the NBA so this game will definitely be one of those “Who knew the Timberwolves would shoot 45 threes tonight and hit nearly half of them?!” You read my preview. You knew, damnit.

On the defensive side, the Wolves go for it. I mean they gooo for it. They’re 6th in steals, 8th in blocks and commit the most fouls in the NBA. They’re slapping at the ball like it’s a pallet of freshly stacked potting soil bags and they’ve just slipped on their Saturday’s best New Balance-and-white-ankle-socks, jean short combo. They give up the most free throw attempts, give up the most rebounds and hey, because I didn’t already mention it in the section above, give up the third most turnovers in the NBA. This is luring you into a sense of security right? Okay well, half of their wins this year have been to the Bucks and Lakers, so like, stay alert tonight. Also, yeah I know that isn’t saying much, but it’s the Wolves and I really like them but also they haven’t been good. POINT IS – if they can beat the Bucks and Lakers, they can most certainly get hot and beat the Kings.

In the macro, I do think the Wolves are going to end up being Sacramento’s competition for the 10th spot at the end of the season. Whether they trade from Ben Simmons or just turn it around themselves, the Wolves have some very talented core pieces, including three guys that could go for 50+ on any given night, and a coach that is very well thought of. They’ve got talent on the bench that has somewhat struggled so far in guys like Naz Reid, Malik Beasley and Jarred Vanderbilt as well as a youngster still trying to break loose in Jaden McDaniels. Pat Beverley is still a good, yet dirty, defender.  I won’t be surprised if this was a blowout for the Kings, an incredibly close game that goes either way, or, sadly, a blowout for the Wolves. These two teams are distilled chaos. Anything can happen tonight.

Prediction

Nothing happens tonight. The Kings and Timberwolves defend each other with superb precision the whole night and go into the fourth quarter 0-0. D’Angelo Russell hits 1 of 2 free throws to put the Wolves up by 1 with a few seconds left, pointing to the ice in his veins as he runs back to the huddle during the subsequent time out. He ends the game shooting 0-17 and 1-2 from the line. De’Aaron Fox hits a three to win it. No one boos because they all left at half time.

Kings: 3, Timberwolves: 1

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39 Comments
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RobHessing
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November 17, 2021 11:35 am

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andy_sims
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November 17, 2021 12:03 pm
Reply to  RobHessing

Pepper steak IS the better coaching option.

Kosta
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November 17, 2021 12:23 pm
Reply to  RobHessing

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ZillersCat
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November 17, 2021 1:53 pm
Reply to  Kosta

But the game is so .. early !
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TerzoM
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November 17, 2021 3:07 pm
Reply to  ZillersCat

Another Must Lose Must Watch Game?comment image

Jman1949
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November 17, 2021 11:37 am

Finally found a team we could beat,
And for now saved the head coach’s seat.
Now with Luke still employed,
It will keep us annoyed
If Minny goes down to defeat!

1951
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November 17, 2021 11:38 am
Gregoryl
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November 17, 2021 11:52 am

Vivek will be all over this…get ready for the preseason excuses:

The NBA announced on Tuesday that it will play two preseason games in Abu Dhabi in October 2022. Next season will mark the first time the league will play games in the Arabian Gulf.

OG_Aggie
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November 17, 2021 2:57 pm
Reply to  Gregoryl

Gross. Where next, that secret space station that the ultra rich are all moving too? Lot of NBA guys coming from Abu Dhabi? Why not play in Nigeria, Cameroon, or some other poor country that players come from, like Canada?

andy_sims
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November 17, 2021 2:58 pm
Reply to  OG_Aggie

Notable that there won’t be any WNBA preseason games there. Will women be allowed to attend the NBA games?

Hozr
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November 17, 2021 7:32 pm
Reply to  andy_sims

Are there any chinese WNBA players and have any of them disappeared recently?

SMF-PDXConnection
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November 17, 2021 3:06 pm
Reply to  OG_Aggie

Oh, it gets much worse better, read this:

https://twitter.com/TrueHoop/status/1460995911048433665?s=20

OG_Aggie
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November 17, 2021 6:05 pm

Putin? Only thing worse would be Dingus Con. (Thanks to Stephen Colbert)

Klam
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November 17, 2021 12:00 pm

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RobHessing
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November 17, 2021 12:14 pm
Reply to  Klam

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Dan Houlder
Dan Houlder
November 17, 2021 12:07 pm

We’re gonna get ripped apart. It’s gonna be agony.

Agony!

Kosta
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November 17, 2021 12:08 pm

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Last edited 2 years ago by Kosta
Klam
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Nostradumbass 18
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November 17, 2021 12:59 pm
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Kosta
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November 17, 2021 2:16 pm
Reply to  Klam

I think we can tame them
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Last edited 2 years ago by Kosta
Hippity_Hop_Barbershop
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November 17, 2021 1:20 pm

Here we go again.

kings4ever
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November 17, 2021 1:32 pm

The Kings are 5th in offensive rating, even with Fox playing tentative, running cold more than hot, trying to get his speed and confidence back, 21st in defensive rating. And we are 14th in point differential at +0.9.

Last year at this time IIRC we were last in point differential and defensive rating. Point +/ – is a very good gauge for competitiveness and portends how well the team may do.

The losses to SAS and OKC has triggered past “trauma” and Doomers out of the woodwork just waiting to wail moan and sing the same old song, nothing of substance or constructive or creative on their minds.

They fail to distinguish the trend in the positive direction despite the bumps and bruises inherent to the nature of competition. You know why the trend is our friend, it is because Marvin is DNP-CD, except for his one-and-done “showcase”, easily one of the worst starters in the NBA last year, and the leash on Buddy is tighter, and our bench is littered with less riff and raff, aka CoJo and Bjelica. It is not that glory days are here, that will take a trade and new coach, but the most of inglorious of days are behind us. But don’t expect the Doomers to tell you this, the positivity and optimism would short circuit their synapses.

For whatever reason, the first game of a road trip portends trouble, regardless of the opponent, I do not know why, perhaps travel and time difference disrupting the mind and body out of routine and home confines? It is not until the second game the reality of the business at hand seems to set in. The OKC game was irrational overconfidence up 18 then when oppenent showed scrap and resolve our players tried too much ISO. Buddy had a good look to win that he totally choked on. HB would have been string music.

If Metu can attack the boards like he did vs DET, we end more possessions without second and third chances to the opponent. We are 29th in defensive rebound rate. Terrible! More rebounds means our defense can move to middle of the pack and if Fox starts to score more and pass more effeciently (only a 2:1 assist : TOV ratio), show chemistry with Ty and Metu, we can sustain or improve upon our 5th rated offense.

Ranking 5th in offense is good considering struggles of Fox and trotting out Mo Scoreless for the first 12 games. A Top 5 Offense and middle of the pack defense is Playoff Team, not a play-in team, but a Top 8 seed. We are not there yet, but we are in striking distance.

In two games Metu has started, Fox has 15 assists against 2 TOs. More of this please. With three shooters to start the halves, we can run a true spread offense which should open up the floor for Fox to drive and kick and make his shots. Fox likes playing with Metu, going out of his way to find him in halfcourt sets.

When did Fox ever go out of his way to find Mo Scoreless?!

Ty has a 3.3 assist to TO ratio ( 5.6 / 1.7) , very good.
Davion has a 3.5 assist to TO (3.9 / 1.1), excellent.
Fox has only a 2.0 assist to TO (6.3 / 3.1), blah.

Fox’s assist to TO ratio is a good metric to monitor for overall team success, along with his TS%. He should be around 58-60% TS%, currently wallowing at a woeful 48%, 8% less than his career best shooting % last year.

If we are to be a playoff team, Fox needs to be 56-58% TS% and 3:1 assist to TOV. Thats the bottom line, and can be facilitated with switch from Scoreless to Metu. It could happen more readily too if Davion were to be inserted into starting lineup over Ty so he could check a guy like Russell, put the clamps on him with more ease and skill than Fox can and so Fox can pick up the less potent backcourt player and concentrate on running effecient offense.

D-Russ is having a terrible year at 38% FGs, worse than Fox, 34% from 3s on 8.5 attempts per game. The guy is more of a Chucker than Buddy, but seems to get hot vs us, and this can be mitigated and prevented if we assigned Davion to him from the opening tip, if the coach had his wits about him instead of playing politics with playing time.

KAT is too big for Holmes, so Len will get the call. Len needs to stay out of foul trouble and be willing to go out to the three point line and get his hand up. KAT is almost as much of a gunner from deep as Russell. I do not like the idea of double teaming KAT but I guess this could work if we do so off the worst of the worst on the Wolves. This is a big game for us to win and I expect us to play well.

SelecaoKOJ
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November 17, 2021 2:24 pm
Reply to  kings4ever

Expect them to play well? Confidence? What’s your mindset, if by some weird chance the Kings lose by 20?

Neither team has ZERO semblace of anything consistent, Unless that word rhymes with Mediocre. expecting them to play well, good, poor, or bad is inconclusive. For a team that has won no more than 2 games in row, Expecting anything is rich.

Both teams defy normalcy. Looking at KAT/DLO/ANT. On paper this is more superior than any 3 the Kings can roll out as a core. Wolves are underperforming more than the Kings.

The Key here is ANT. No one on the KIngs can stop him. Not even Barnes, if this kid has one of his 40 pt specials.

OG_Aggie
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November 17, 2021 2:59 pm
Reply to  kings4ever

tl:dr

Boomers not Doomers

Kingsguru21
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November 17, 2021 4:24 pm
Reply to  kings4ever

Nice fucking model, McGenius!

alec26
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November 17, 2021 1:38 pm

Nothing happens tonight. The Kings and Timberwolves defend each other with superb precision the whole night and go into the fourth quarter 0-0. D’Angelo Russell hits 1 of 2 free throws to put the Wolves up by 1 with a few seconds left, pointing to the ice in his veins as he runs back to the huddle during the subsequent time out. He ends the game shooting 0-17 and 1-2 from the line. De’Aaron Fox hits a three to win it. No one boos because they all left at half time.

Kings: 3, Timberwolves: 1

Easily the worst game in the history of the NBA. At least the Kings win.

OG_Aggie
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November 17, 2021 2:53 pm

Yup, being a fan of this team makes you lose your mind.

jwalker1395
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November 17, 2021 3:10 pm

I remember when this stretch of games was supposed to be our opportunity to get a cushion of wins above .500. Instead we’re already at the annual stretch of desperately trying to keep the wheels from falling off. Why do I bother with this team?

craigpg
November 17, 2021 3:19 pm

Why go all the way to LA for mongolian? The best one is in Citrus Heights

Hozr
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November 17, 2021 7:31 pm
Reply to  craigpg

Do tell. Inquiring minds want to know.

craigpg
November 17, 2021 8:25 pm
Reply to  Hozr

Mongolian BBQ on Greenback near Fair Oaks

andy_sims
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November 18, 2021 8:47 am
Reply to  craigpg

Haven’t been there, but Oz in Rancho has never not been stellar.

Adamsite
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Nostradumbass 14
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November 17, 2021 3:56 pm

LOL, it’s almost like the roster just isn’t very good. They are now going to play Bagley to help with rebounding when just a few weeks ago they told him he would not be apart of the rotation. Seriously, this on Monte just as much as it is on Walton.

I just love how they are trying out different players and rotations 20% of the way through the season. There are literally just 3 new guys to the rotation in Mitchell, Len and TT, yet Walton still doesn’t know if he should scratch his watch or wind his ass.

https://twitter.com/James_HamNBA/status/1461116593505595393

https://twitter.com/James_HamNBA/status/1461116113245249536

https://twitter.com/James_HamNBA/status/1461116402681585668

Last edited 2 years ago by Adamsite
Kosta
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November 17, 2021 4:19 pm
Reply to  Adamsite

SACRAMENTO KINGS: A WORK IN PROGRESS

or:

cul-de-SAC Kings?

cul-de-sac definition: a route or course leading nowhere.

SMF-PDXConnection
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November 17, 2021 4:28 pm
Reply to  Kosta

I can think of a few sackings that need to happen.

Kosta
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November 17, 2021 5:03 pm

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Hozr
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November 17, 2021 7:36 pm

I can think of a some culling that needs to happen as well.

SexyNapear
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November 17, 2021 4:40 pm
Reply to  Adamsite

Translation from Luke: I have to make it look like I’m doing something different because I am shit out of ideas, my offensive sets suck, and Food Coma Fox ain’t gonna save my ass.

satdawg
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November 17, 2021 4:24 pm

This is not gonna end well…

Kosta
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November 17, 2021 5:03 pm
Reply to  satdawg

TRAP GAME

…for the T-wolves!

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