Indiana Pacers (33-8) at Sacramento Kings (15-26)
Location: Sleep Train Arena, Sacramento, CA
Tip: 10:00 p.m. EST/7:00 p.m. PT
TV: Check local listings
Line: IND -11.5
Tonight the Indiana Pacers will take on the Sacramento Kings at Sleep Train Arena in Sacramento, California. This game preview is brought to you by Crown Royal and Crown’s Center Court, asking you to Reign On! For Crown Royal, to Reign On is to win, and we want you to Reign On responsibly this NBA season.
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Indiana stares at their third game of the current Western Conference road trip, and the first game of a back-t0-back. The Pacers meet former associate head coach with Indiana and current head coach Brian Shaw and the Denver Nuggets Saturday night.
First, Indiana needs to focus on a struggling Kings team. Sacramento sits at 15-26 and probably not heading in the direction of a playoff berth. Nevertheless, they are still dangerous, but less dangerous at that.
Starting forward Rudy Gay is out indefinitely with an Achilles injury, as reported a little while ago. Starting center DeMarcus Cousins is also dealing with an injury to his ankle. Cousins’ status for tonight is uncertain, but the Pacers should game plan to face the young big man.
In the first matchup between the two teams, Indiana simply dominated en route to a 116-92 win. The Pacers will need to do more of the same this go-round.
That means big games from Paul George (31 points in the home win) and the bench (37 points). I think if those guys take care of their business, the Pacers will be well on their way to another winning record over five games out west with their second victory in the first three games.
George should take advantage of his matchup with Derrick Williams, who would start in place of Gay. Williams is inconsistent and certainly not as good defensively as Gay is, especially in terms of length.
If Cousins plays, it’ll be another challenge for Indiana’s Roy Hibbert down low. Cousins is much more athletic and loves to finish strong around the rim.
Without Gay, I don’t think Sacramento poses as a big threat. Indiana wins 107-95, and continues to Reign On!