Feb 7, 2016; Boston, MA, USA; Sacramento Kings center DeMarcus Cousins (15) during the first half against the Boston Celtics at TD Garden. Mandatory Credit: Winslow Townson-USA TODAY Sports
The Sacramento Kings travel to take on the Boston Celtics on December 2, 2016. This article examines what Kings fans need to know about tonight’s game.
Tonight, the TD Garden and the Boston Celtics play host to the Sacramento Kings. I am hoping the craziness from Wednesday does not carry over into tonight. As I am sure you know already, but Wednesday’s game in Philadelphia was postponed due to unsafe playing conditions. It has been awhile since that happened in an NBA game. It was a very unique and wild situation, but let us put that behind us and focus on tonight’s game against the Boston Celtics.
There are no reported injuries for either team tonight. That is a blessing and it should be a good game between two fit and fully healthy teams.
Be sure to check twitter or watch the pregame show to get any late breaking news that may arise on the injury front.
Nov 23, 2016; Brooklyn, NY, USA; Boston Celtics point guard Isaiah Thomas (4) celebrates with Boston Celtics center Al Horford (42) during the third quarter at Barclays Center. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports
Boston Celtics’ Scouting Report
The Boston Celtics have a record of 10 wins and 8 losses on the season. Lead by Head Coach Brad Stevens, the Celtics are in prime position for a third consecutive playoff appearance. The team has a record of 4 wins and 4 losses at home this season, as well.
Boston spent big in the offseason to acquire 4-time NBA All-Star Al Horford. Horford played each of his first 9 NBA seasons in Atlanta but comes to Boston on a contract of 4-years and $113 million. Horford has only played 8 games this season, but looks sharp and will be an interesting matchup for DeMarcus Cousins in tonight’s contest.
Isaiah Thomas has been the Celtics star player so far this season. A former All-Star, Thomas is averaging 26.1 points, 2.6 rebounds, 6.3 assists, 2.3 3-pointers made, and 0.7 steals per game through 18 games this season. The increased scoring has been a factor of both his minutes and shot attempts increasing and not a short-term outlier in efficiency. It will be interesting to see if Horford takes away some of those possessions or if this is the new Isaiah Thomas baseline going forward.
The Celtics enter tonight’s contest fresh off a 121-114 loss to the Detroit Pistons on Wednesday. Below is a highlight video from that game to give you a glimpse at the Celtics on-court play this season.
Now, let us move on to what to watch for in tonight’s game for the Sacramento Kings.
Nov 18, 2015; Atlanta, GA, USA; Atlanta Hawks center Al Horford (15) drives against Sacramento Kings forward DeMarcus Cousins (15) in the first quarter of their game at Philips Arena. Mandatory Credit: Jason Getz-USA TODAY Sports
What to Watch for?
DeMarcus Cousins versus Al Horford
DeMarcus Cousins is the NBA’s 4th leading scorer with 28.7 points per game and 12th leading rebounder at 10.4 per contest. I gave a brief list of Al Horford’s accomplishments already, but this is a showdown of two of the league’s best big men. I expect these two to see a lot of each other tonight, so tune in and enjoy the show.
If you want to see how I predicted DeMarcus Cousins to fare in this matchup or any other Kings’ performance, check out my predicting the box score column found here.
Slowing down Isaiah Thomas
I mentioned already Thomas has been the offensive workhorse for the Celtics, so the Kings’ guards will need to bring their defensive game tonight. Thomas is the NBA’s 9th leading scorer this season.
The Kings’ primary point guards are Darren Collison and Ty Lawson. Both players have poor defensive ratings this season with Lawson at 106.9 and Collison at 106.4 points per 100 possessions allowed. Not something you want to see when guarding the opposition’s best player.
Thomas could be in for a big night if the Kings’ defenders do not raise their game and outperform their season numbers. Be on the lookout for that.
Winning in Boston
The Celtics have had the Kings’ number in recent meetings. The Celtics swept the season series against the Kings last season. They have also defeated the Kings’ eight straight meetings in Boston. That is right, the Kings have not defeated the Celtics in Boston since January 19, 2007. Here is to hoping, the Kings end the losing streaks against Boston tonight.
Dec 31, 2014; Boston, MA, USA; Referee Tony Brown (6) and Boston Celtics guard Jameer Nelson (28) try to separate Sacramento Kings center DeMarcus Cousins (15) and Boston Celtics guard Marcus Smart (right) during the second half of the Boston Celtics 106-84 win over the Sacramento Kings at TD Garden. Both players received a technical foul on the play. Mandatory Credit: Winslow Townson-USA TODAY Sports
There you have it, tonight’s game preview against the Boston Celtics. Hopefully, this gives you the information you need before tuning into tonight’s contest. If you miss the action, do not fret, we will have you covered with a game recap at A Royal Pain and the highlight video will follow in my next predicting the box score column.
It should be a fun and exciting contest, though. The Celtics are positioned to make another deep run in the playoffs this season and the Kings have a great chance to knock them off tonight. It will take a great team effort to make that happen, but it is possible. Tune in and enjoy the contest.