SACRAMENTO KINGS

Preview: Fox, Kings seek revenge over Kawhi, Clippers

Dec 12, 2023, 9:51 AM | Updated: 9:52 am

LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA - FEBRUARY 24: De'Aaron Fox #5 of the Sacramento Kings drives to the basket...

(Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)

(Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)

It will be a quick turnaround for the Sacramento Kings and Los Angeles Clippers as both teams will play the second game of a back-to-back on Tuesday night at crypto.com Arena.

Sacramento (13-8) is fresh off of a record-breaking performance on Monday night that saw its offense knock down a franchise-record 25 triples during a 131-118 win over the Brooklyn Nets.

Los Angeles (12-10) played its core rotation players big minutes during a 132-127 win against the Portland Trail Blazers on Monday, with Paul George (41 minutes), Kawhi Leonard (39 minutes), and James Harden (37 minutes) all shouldering a heavy workload.

Both of these Western Conference contenders enter play on Tuesday night in the middle of solid stretches, with the Kings having won 11 of their past 15 games and the Clippers holding a 9-3 record since opening the season with a 3-7 record.

Can Sacramento avenge November 29th’s 14-point loss to Los Angeles and snap the Clippers’ four-game win streak?

Sacramento Kings vs. Los Angeles Clippers Game Info

When: 7:30 PM PST

Where: crypto.com Arena – Los Angeles, CA

TV: NBC Sports California

Radio: Sactown Sports 1140 AM – Coverage starts at 6:00 PM on Game Night

Line: Clippers -3.5, O/U 229.5

Be sure to tune in right here on Sactown Sports 1140 for all of your Kings vs. Clippers coverage, beginning at 6:00 PM PST on Game Night before a 7:30 PM PST tip-off from downtown Los Angeles.

Tired Legs?

The Los Angeles Clippers of old would usually sit one or both of Kawhi Leonard and Paul George on the second night of a back-to-back, but that hasn’t been the case this season.

Leonard and George have played in all three of the Clippers’ back-to-backs this season, and while the injury reports for Tuesday’s game won’t be released until 1:30 PM PST, there’s a good chance both will suit up against Sacramento.

On the Kings’ side of things, nobody logged more than 34 minutes during Monday’s win over Brooklyn, with De’Aaron Fox (33 minutes), Kevin Huerter (17 minutes), and Harrison Barnes (27 minutes) taking on a lighter workload than usual.

We’ll have to wait to see what the injury report says, but it looks like we’ll see a mostly healthy showdown between Sacramento and Los Angeles on the second night of a back-to-back for both teams.

YouTube video

Last Time We Met Here…

The last time that these teams met in Los Angeles, chaos unfolded.

On February 24th, the Kings pulled out a 176-175 win in double overtime that will live on as one of the greatest basketball games you’ll ever see.

With Malik Monk (45 points) and De’Aaron Fox (42 points) leading the way, Sacramento was able to erase a 14-point deficit with less than four minutes remaining in regulation to stun the Clippers in the second-highest-scoring game in NBA history.

While we might not see 351 combined points on Tuesday night, these two teams have a history of putting on offensive clinics when they have crossed paths in recent memory.

Since the start of the 2022-23 season (five games), the Kings average 130.6 points per game on 51 percent shooting from the field against Los Angeles, while the Clippers have scored 128.0 points per game on 50 percent shooting against Sacramento.

Expect fireworks–just not quite to the level of February’s double-OT shootout.

Is Keegan Back?

It’s been a rough start to the season for Keegan Murray, who has dealt with an ongoing lower back issue and struggled to find consistency on the offensive end.

Over the past three games, the 23-year-old has looked like his normal self–and that could be a significant development for this Kings offense.

Murray is averaging 17.0 points on 54 percent shooting from the field and 47 percent from beyond the arc (on 6.3 attempts) over his past three games–a much-needed stretch after the forward entered December shooting 39 percent from the field and 28 percent from deep.

If Sacramento can get Murray back into his lethal self from beyond the arc, they will have their three-and-D wing that they’ve been expecting from last year’s fourth overall pick.

During the Kings’ 131-117 loss to the Clippers on November 29th, Murray was unavailable due to lower back soreness. With Murray out, Sacramento had no answer for Leonard and Harden, who combined to score 60 points.

Expect Murray to be thrown at one of Leonard, Harden, or George this time around as the reigning Defensive Player of the Game looks to carry his success from Monday night in Tuesday’s matchup in Southern California.

Notes 

  • Los Angeles enters play with one of the NBA’s top-ten defenses (6th in opponent points per game and 7th in defensive rating)
  • The Clippers also rank 7th in opponent three-point field goal percentage (35%).
  • Sacramento is 11-1 this season when shooting 35% or better from three-point range.
  • De’Aaron Fox, who scored 40 points during a loss to the Clippers last month, is averaging 33.0 points over his last five games vs. Los Angeles.
  • The Kings are 0-2 on the second night of back-to-backs this season, while the Clippers are 1-2.

Kings vs. Clippers Injury Report

*Since both teams are on a back-to-back, injury reports will be published by 1:30 PM PST

Sacramento

  • Not yet released

Los Angeles

  • Not yet released

Upcoming Schedule

  • Tuesday, December 12th – Sacramento Kings @ Los Angeles Clippers – 7:30 PM PST
  • Thursday, December 14th – Sacramento Kings vs. Oklahoma City Thunder – 7:00 PM PST
  • Saturday, December 16th – Sacramento Kings vs. Utah Jazz – 7:00 PM PST
  • Monday, December 18th – Sacramento Kings vs. Washington Wizards – 7:00 PM PST
  • Wednesday, December 20th – Sacramento Kings vs. Boston Celtics – 7:00 PM PST

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