Sacramento Kings: Game 8 Preview at Toronto Raptors

Nov 15, 2015; Sacramento, CA, USA; Sacramento Kings forward DeMarcus Cousins (15) moves in against Toronto Raptors forward Bismack Biyombo (8) during the fourth quarter at Sleep Train Arena. The Sacramento Kings defeated the Toronto Raptors 107-101. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

Nov 15, 2015; Sacramento, CA, USA; Sacramento Kings forward DeMarcus Cousins (15) moves in against Toronto Raptors forward Bismack Biyombo (8) during the fourth quarter at Sleep Train Arena. The Sacramento Kings defeated the Toronto Raptors 107-101. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

The Sacramento Kings travel to take on the Toronto Raptors on November 6, 2016.  This article examines everything Kings fans need to know about tonight’s game.

Tonight, the Sacramento Kings suit up in Toronto to take on the Raptors.  This is the absurd fifth game of the week and the second of a back-to-back.  The Kings were dismantled by the Milwaukee Bucks 117-91 in last night’s game.   It was an ugly loss by luckily Sacramento can quickly turn the page against the Toronto Raptors.

Let us forget that Bucks contest and dive deep into the game against Toronto tonight.

Nov 1, 2016; Miami, FL, USA; Sacramento Kings forward Rudy Gay (8) looks on in the game against the Miami Heat during the first half at American Airlines Arena. Mandatory Credit: Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports

Nov 1, 2016; Miami, FL, USA; Sacramento Kings forward Rudy Gay (8) looks on in the game against the Miami Heat during the first half at American Airlines Arena. Mandatory Credit: Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports

Injuries

The Sacramento Kings have two players on the injury report for tonight’s contest.  Both players missed last night’s game against the Milwaukee Bucks and are currently listed as questionable for tonight’s contest.  Rudy Gay is dealing with a rib injury and Anthony Tolliver has a knee issue.  Check twitter before tipoff to see if either player is suiting up.

The injury uncertainties lead me to skip my predicting the box score column for this game.  I am sorry, but it should make a triumphant return for Tuesday’s game.

Darren Collison serves his eighth and final game of his suspension tonight.  He should return in Tuesday’s contest, but the Kings will be left with Ty Lawson and Garrett Temple handling the point guard duties tonight.

Sep 26, 2016; Toronto, Ontario, Canada; Toronto Raptors head coach Dwane Casey poses with guards DeMar DeRozan (10) and Kyle Lowry (7) during media day at BioSteel Centre. Mandatory Credit: Dan Hamilton-USA TODAY Sports

Sep 26, 2016; Toronto, Ontario, Canada; Toronto Raptors head coach Dwane Casey poses with guards DeMar DeRozan (10) and Kyle Lowry (7) during media day at BioSteel Centre. Mandatory Credit: Dan Hamilton-USA TODAY Sports

Toronto Raptors’ Scouting Report

The Toronto Raptor’s enter tonight’s contest on a three-game winning streak.  Their record this season is four wins and one loss.  They are one of the Eastern Conference’s top teams and their only loss this season is a three-point defeat to the Cleveland Cavaliers.   Below is a highlight video from that contest to give you a glimpse of what Toronto brings to the court.

DeMar DeRozan enters the contest as the Raptors’ leading scorer.  He has been on fire this season averaging 35.8 points per game on 55.1% from the field and 84.4% from the line.  Expect those numbers to regress, but facing that hot of a hand is never an ideal scenario.

The Raptors feature a strong roster anchored by two-time NBA All-Star and 2015-2016 All-NBA team member Kyle Lowry.  Lowry has started this season a little slow, but expect him to be manning the point and leading Toronto deep into the playoff this season.

The Raptors look strong this season and the Kings are catching them at a very bad time.  Here is to hoping Sacramento can slow down the red-hot Raptors in Toronto tonight.

Jan 28, 2015; Toronto, Ontario, CAN; Sacramento Kings center DeMarcus Cousins (15) passes the ball under pressure from Toronto Raptors forward Amir Johnson (15) at Air Canada Centre. The Raptors beat the Kings 119-102. Mandatory Credit: Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports

Jan 28, 2015; Toronto, Ontario, CAN; Sacramento Kings center DeMarcus Cousins (15) passes the ball under pressure from Toronto Raptors forward Amir Johnson (15) at Air Canada Centre. The Raptors beat the Kings 119-102. Mandatory Credit: Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports

What to Watch for?

Five Game Losing Streak?

The Sacramento Kings end a five-game east coast swing with tonight’s contest.  Traveling across the country for the week has not been kind to the Kings as they currently stand at zero wins and four losses on the trip being outscored by fifty-seven points in the four games combined.  This is a tough game and the losing streak could easily head to five with another blowout loss in Toronto tonight.  Hope for the best.

DeMarcus Cousins Takeover

The Kings are going to need their big man to step up and have a monster game if they are going to walk out of Toronto with a victory.  Even more so if Rudy Gay is out again, Cousins needs to step up and lead the team.  DeMarcus has a tough match-up against Jonas Valanciunas, but last season against Toronto he averaged 25.5 points and 9.5 rebounds per game.  Cousins will probably need his first 40 point contest to lead the Kings to victory tonight.  I think he is capable if he is focused and motivated.

Defense

The 117 point drubbing laid on Sacramento yesterday was the most recent in a string of poor defensive games.  The Kings are just giving up too many points for the pace they play at to be successful.  Coach Joerger can and will improve this defense when given ample practice time.  That has not been plentiful this early season, so all we can hope for tonight is a boost in defensive intensity.  Hopefully, the Kings come out fired up and a little embarrassed.  That leads them to play with a great defensive intensity and the hold the Raptors to under 100 points in tonight’s contest.

Jan 28, 2015; Toronto, Ontario, CAN; Sacramento Kings center DeMarcus Cousins (15) dunks the ball against the Toronto Raptors at Air Canada Centre. The Raptors beat the Kings 119-102. Mandatory Credit: Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports

Jan 28, 2015; Toronto, Ontario, CAN; Sacramento Kings center DeMarcus Cousins (15) dunks the ball against the Toronto Raptors at Air Canada Centre. The Raptors beat the Kings 119-102. Mandatory Credit: Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports

Summary

Let us review what we have gone over so far.  The Kings head to Toronto tonight to take on the Raptors.  I gave you a rundown of their injury report, a brief scouting report on the opponent, and three things I am watching for in tonight’s game.

It is hard for me to come up with a win the Kings head to Toronto after just playing a game and pick up a victory, but it is the NBA and surprises happen.  Tune in and root like crazy for the Kings.  If you are in the Toronto area, head out to the game and cheer like crazy for them.  Maybe all that energy will give them a boost and they will pull the upset.  Here is to hoping they can make it happen.

Check back to A Royal Pain  for the game recap and everything you need to know about the Sacramento Kings this season.  Thank you for reading.

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