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Kings vs Wolves Preview: In Sheep’s Clothing

The Wolves have jumped into fifth place in the West and the "worst trade in basketball history" looks better by the day.
By | 14 Comments | Jan 30, 2023

The Sacramento Kings remain in the Twin Cities for their second round of dog catcher duty against a wounded Wolves team that’s packing a pretty hefty bite. After their listless loss at the hands of the Wolves on Saturday night, the Kings are in danger of dropping three straight games for… checking here… wow for only the third time this season. Can the Kangz regain their conquering ways to defeat Ant-Man? Will Sacramento be able to hold D’Angelo Russell to less than seven three pointers in the first half? Hell, will Sacramento be able to hold Edwards to less than 26 points in the second half?!

Let’s talk Kings basketball!

When: Monday, January 30th, 5:00 PM PT
Where: Target Center, Minneapolis, MN
TV: NBC Sports California
Radio: Sactown Sports 1140

For Your Consideration

Minny Hands Make Light Work: That Saturday night game was an absolute bummer. We know that Minny was on the second night of a back-to-back, and with this being their third-in-four-nights, maybe we can hope for some tired legs this time around, but good god, the Kings looked like room temperature mayo out there. I praised Harrison Barnes a few games ago for upping his ante after a rough start to the season, and the man immediately goes 1-7 for 13 points on Saturday. Everyone’s got rough games and I’m certainly not going to trash the man for a bad night that all professionals have but… timing could have been better! Huerter, 4-12, Murray, 3-8, Fox, 10-24 with 8-18 and 1-6 from three being the BETTER of his two halves. Up and down the roster, just off-nights. Woof. We can withdraw this game in the memory bank and send it straight into the void.

Obviously the keys to tonight’s game are pretty damn simple, in that Sacramento can’t allow Anthony Edwards and D’Angelo Russell to vastly out perform their offensive averages. Edwards is one thing – he’s a budding star, testing the limits of what his talents can get him. He’s a borderline All-Star this year that I won’t be surprised if a decade from now he’s got 10 appearance in the game. Getting 34-10-6 is an eventuality that might end up becoming a pretty common feature in years to come. With two games in a row against him, I can hand wave away him getting one on the Kings. Russell on the other hand, didn’t just have a good first half, he had himself a perfect first half – eight attempts and eight makes, seven from distance. He set the tone, killed any runs the Kings started to stir up and general, kept a worse team’s head above water until Anthony Edwards could step up. The Kings Killer was entirely unbothered by what the Kings threw at him, like kids pelting a tank with snowballs. Hold him to his averages and the Kings win that game. Now, that being said,  all credit to the Kings in the second half for their defense on him, or to whatever drama D-Lo had wiggle into his brain at halftime, because he was just non-existent in the last 24 minutes of the game. That gave way to the Ant-Man show, but… I can give a little credit to individual defense in this case.

The Naz Reid Show, the nice little second half from Jaden McDaniels, all of that comes in the course of an NBA game and I have full confidence in the Kings recovering from little pops of scoring from role players. Was the bench good last game? No, they certainly share a bit of the blame, even if they’ve trended down now for awhile. Monk was finally back to himself a bit so props for that. But, the Kings can, again, recover from a weak performance from the bench, as well. Swapping 23 points from one player in the first half with 26 points in the second half from another keeps things closer than they should be and puts games out of reach. Not a fun start to the road trip, but redemption is at hand. Here’s to a little spark this time around.

Prediction

A dog fight that drags into the fourth quarter with no one able to separate themselves. Fox goes cold in the fourth but Keegan Murray hits a couple of big time shots of Sabonis rebound-and-kicks and the Kings survive a frigid trip up north.

Kings: 114, Wolves: 109

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TheBaker
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January 30, 2023 12:18 pm

Second time around we will get it. Maim the wolves!

UpgradedToQuestionable
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January 30, 2023 12:36 pm
Reply to  TheBaker

Muzzle Minny!

Let’s see how Coach Brown and his staff counter with an updated strategy for Game 2.

by the by –

the League and the Lakers and the Lebron – oy vey! Somehow, now the officiating is a problem. Major /smh.

aplumley
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January 30, 2023 1:34 pm

Kings get jobbed several times in a matter of weeks and no one notices. Bron gets fouled (after walking) an there is no call and it’s the lead story of every major sports broadcast

sacm3bill
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January 30, 2023 3:32 pm
Reply to  aplumley

Not to mention, there were 2 other missed calls in the report and they were in the Lakers’ favor. But yeah, it happened to Lebron so everybody clutch your pearls.

Jman1949
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January 30, 2023 12:32 pm

Face the TWolves again tonight
And the Kings must show better fight.
No excuse to be tired;
We must give what’s required
Stop the sweep so the beam can shine bright!

Milkman
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January 30, 2023 12:39 pm

Santa Clara 49ers are cursed. I’m kidding… (deep sigh)

Klam
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Nostradumbass 18
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January 30, 2023 5:18 pm
Reply to  Milkman

I was disappointed because regardless of who won, I thought I was going to be watching a good, competitive game (before the game started). Sucks that it was merely just a blowout loss.

aplumley
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January 30, 2023 1:30 pm

Nothing went right and the Kings lost by single digits and were in it at the end. I think shots fall tonight and Kings win going away.

murraytant
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January 30, 2023 3:11 pm

The trade was bad- the worst? no but bad.
The issue is not this year-Edwards emerges, Delo does his thing, McDaniel’s emerges, KAT gets injured again, Rudy under-performs and they finish around the play off-play-in interface. But the issue is the future- there is none. They traded valued accumulated assets_ Beverly, Vanderbilt, Beasly and yes, Kessler.
They would have done better by keeping the assets, using Kessler and having a future.
who is better than Rudy right now
Fools gold, that trade. Good for the Kings.

Game tonight- as all games now- is critical.

Adamsite
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Nostradumbass 14
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January 30, 2023 4:14 pm
Reply to  murraytant

It may go down as the worst. Kessler, Vandy, Beasley (all of whom are key contributors to the current Jazz team), 4 free and clear first round picks, and a pick swap is pretty significant for Gobert, who has had near zero impact on improving the T-Wolves. They will never recoup those losses. Rudy will very likely be out of the league by the time the 2027 and 2029 picks are conveyed.

Good way to kill a fanbase for the next decade. The T-Wolves may need to sell one of their quality players in KAT, Ant, or D-Lo to restock the cupboard.

Kingsguru21
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January 30, 2023 4:30 pm
Reply to  Adamsite

I think, and this is just a personal opinion, that the Wolves traded for Gobert to be able to justify moving KAT. Especially when it doesn’t look like it will work.

Last edited 1 year ago by Kingsguru21
Adamsite
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Nostradumbass 14
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January 30, 2023 4:43 pm
Reply to  Kingsguru21

But why would they favor Gobert over KAT, especially when it cost them 4 picks? Do they think they can get more for KAT? Why not keep the picks, move KAT, and keep Kessler?

It seems to me it was some horrible decision making to attempt to win now with twin towers. They went just 10-10 when KAT played with Gobert.

Kingsguru21
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January 30, 2023 5:01 pm
Reply to  Adamsite

Because when push comes to shove, KAT isn’t a winning player in Tim Connelly’s eyes. I’m not saying that I really think Gobert is much more valuable (I’d take Domas over both), just that Connelly is building around Edwards and this move was the primer to make that happen.

What I don’t get is why the Wolves SuperMax’d KAT.

BeTheBall
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January 30, 2023 3:30 pm

Hopefully they don’t come out and let Russell and Edwards shoot wide-open shots like Saturday. Otherwise we’re in for another long evening of ugly ball.

Based on their play of late, I’m fully expecting another loss, so I’d love them to prove me wrong and show up to play this time.

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