SACRAMENTO KINGS

Preview: Kings hope to secure fifth-straight win by beating LA

Jan 18, 2023, 9:29 AM

| Updated: 2:44 pm
SACRAMENTO, CALIFORNIA - JANUARY 07: Domantas Sabonis #10 of the Sacramento Kings drives to the bas...

(Photo by Lachlan Cunningham/Getty Images)

(Photo by Lachlan Cunningham/Getty Images)

The Sacramento Kings (24-18) will take a four-game winning streak into Wednesday night’s matchup against the Los Angeles Lakers (20-24) when the two teams meet at crypto.com Arena.

After winning seven of their past ten games, the Kings have jumped into fourth place in the Western Conference standings and increased their lead in the Pacific Division to three games during the process.

These two old foes will meet for the final time this season as the Lakers will look to even the season series at two games apiece.

Here’s everything that you need to know for tonight’s Kings vs. Lakers showdown in Southern California:

Sacramento Kings vs. Los Angeles Lakers Game Info

When: 7:30 PM PST

Where: crypto.com Arena– Los Angeles, CA

TV: NBC Sports California

Radio: Sactown Sports 1140 AM – Pregame coverage starts at 6:00 PM PST on Game Night

Line: Kings -2.5, O/U: 247.5

What To Watch For

Protect The Paint

Back on January 7th when these teams last met, Los Angeles had a field day in Sacramento’s paint.

The Lakers, who average 57.1 points in the paint this season (second-best in the NBA), racked up 70 points in the paint during a 136-134 win at Golden 1 Center. Los Angeles’ 136 points on 61 percent shooting from the field and 43 percent from deep was the team’s best offensive performance of the season, meaning that there needs to be some adjustments from the Kings tonight.

We all know that Sacramento has no problem scoring the basketball. Entering play on Wednesday, the Kings are the first team since the 1988-89 Denver Nuggets to score 130+ points in five-straight games. But you can’t bank on out-gunning your opponent each night.

Expect the Kings to pack the paint and ensure that players like Thomas Bryant, who scored a season-high 29 points and grabbed 14 rebounds against Sacramento on January 7th, can’t get as comfortable this time around.

LeBron James has been playing like he’s aging backwards as the future Hall of Famer is averaging just under 30 points per game this season, meaning that the Kings will have their hands full with James. Letting players like Bryant, Russell Westbrook, or former Kings forward Wenyen Gabriel beat you in the paint just can’t happen–not again.

Get Malik Going

Sacramento’s starting five has been incredible during the four-game winning streak, but the Kings could use more production out of its bench.

Trey Lyles has taken on more of a scoring roll as of late (14.0 points per game on 66/62/84 shooting over the past five games), but the bench could use an even bigger boost from Malik Monk.

Monk has had a strong season thus far, but he has been in a shooting slump for a few weeks now. The 24-year-old is averaging 8.8 points per game on 35 percent shooting from the field and 29 percent from downtown over the past six games. If Sacramento can get its Sixth Man of the Year candidate going again, they will be able to really apply pressure to Los Angeles’ defense that allows 118.1 points per game (27th in the NBA).

It wouldn’t be a bad time for Monk to find his stroke during Wednesday’s game, as the guard could use the ‘revenge game’ factor against his old Lakers teammates.

Injury Report

Sacramento

  • Neemias Queta and Keon Ellis are on assignment with G-League affiliate Stockton.

Los Angeles

  • LeBron James – QUESTIONABLE (left ankle soreness)
  • Anthony Davis – OUT (right foot stress injury)
  • Austin Reaves – OUT (left hamstring strain)
  • Lonnie Walker IV – OUT (left knee tendinitis)
  • Scotty Pippen Jr. is on assignment with the team’s G-League affiliate.

Recent History

The Kings can take the season series (3-1) with a win over the Lakers on Wednesday, which would secure any tie-breaker scenario between the two teams.

Los Angeles has struggled against Sacramento over the past three seasons as they hold a 4-6 record against the Kings since the beginning of the 2020-21 season.

The Lakers haven’t secured a regular season series win over Sacramento since the 2019-20 season (2-1).

Sacramento Kings Postgame Show

Check out our Sactown Sports Kings Recap Show on the Sactown Sports 1140 YouTube channel!

Sactown Sports Kings Recap Shows will be happening all season long, immediately following each Kings game!

Upcoming Sacramento Kings Schedule

Wednesday, January 18th – Sacramento Kings @ Los Angeles Lakers – 7:30 PM PST

Friday, January 20th – Sacramento Kings vs. Oklahoma City Thunder – 7:00 PM PST

Saturday, January 21st – Sacramento Kings vs. Philadelphia 76ers – 7:00 PM PST

Monday, January 23rd – Sacramento Kings vs. Memphis Grizzlies – 7:00 PM PST

Wednesday, January 25th – Sacramento Kings vs. Toronto Raptors – 7:00 PM PST

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