The Sacramento Kings (17-30) are a much improved team and are coming off of a heartbreaking 1 point loss to the Utah Jazz. Tonight, they face a Golden State Warriors (19-26) team that is reeling ever since the Monta Ellis trade, losing 5 out of it's last 6 games.
Tip-off is scheduled for Saturday at 10:30 pm ET at the Oracle Arena in Sacramento, California. This game can be seen on NBA TV.
Tune in and watch the booing that that Golden State owner Joe Lacob and the Warriors will receive as DeMarcus Cousins and Marcus Thornton lay a beating on the Warriors like I think that they will.
NBA odds have the Warriors as a 2.5 point favorite on the spread and the total for the game is listed at 209.
Can the Warriors break out of their funk and quiet their home town fans?
Save money, get rid of your best offensive player
I'm sorry to be so blunt folks, but trading Monta Ellis was a really poor decision on Warriors owner Joe Lacob's part. He's ruined Chris Mullin's tribute night where his number went up to the rafters, and he's basically thrown away this season as you can see by the Warriors recent performances.
Ellis gave the Warriors an offensive punch that would score at least 20 points on most nights and could do more than just score. Now the Warriors rely on the backcourt of Nate Robinson and Klay Thompson.
By no means is the combination of Robinson and Thompson inept, but Robinson is well suited as a bench player and Thompson is a 22 year old inexperienced basketball player.
However, Thompson has excelled since getting the playing time. In the month of March, he's averaged 15.5 points, 2.6 assists, and 2.5 rebounds in just 28.4 minutes per game Thompson is an oversized shooting guard at 6 foot 7 but looks to be a big part of the Warriors future. In his last 5 games, he's doubled his seasonal average and averaged 18 points per game. This is also a player that's always underpriced as a fantasy player and always performs.
Look for the Warrior's backcourt to play well against the Kings. I'm not expecting much defense and the combination of the experience and hustle of Robinson and the skill of Thompson will be effective in this game.
Blue collar man
I've been saying this since he's been in the NBA, David Lee was underestimated and is the defintion of the words consistent and reliable. Right now, David Lee is the franchise and he hasn't disappointed. He's averaging 19.5 points and 9 rebounds this season. An interesting matchup will be between David Lee and DeMarcus Cousins. Cousins is foul prone and if Lee can get Cousins into foul trouble, I could see this game going in Golden State's favor.
"The next Isaiah Thomas"
We all know about hall of famer and former head coach Isiah Thomas. Thomas was a great basketball player but has been a major liability for the New York Knicks (Check out my pick on the Knicks game today). Just the sound of his name bring's boos in Madison Square Garden at Sacramento Kings Isaiah Thomas's expense.
The younger (not related) Thomas hasn't let that bother him. He was a star guard in college with the Washington Huskies and has snuck up on people in the NBA as a 2nd round pick in the 2011 NBA Draft. I mean, what a steal!
Thomas didn't get much playing time at the beginning of the season but ever since that game where he lit the Knicks up, his playing time has increased. He's only averaging 22.3 minutes per game but is averaging 10.1 points, 3.4 assists, and 2.4 rebounds per game. In his last 5 games, Thomas is averaging 15.8 points, 6 assists, and 3.4 rebounds per game
Thomas has been a focal point of the team's offense and defense at only 5 foot 9 and is also another bargain for the fantasy player. Look for Thomas to go big on Nate Robinson in the matchup of the two 5 foot 9 players as Nate won't be able to keep up with young Isaiah.
This is a player with great talent but you don't know what you're going to get from him on a game in, game out basis. Aside from always looking like he's angry, Cousins is foul prone and that's a major concern for the Kings. The Kings can ill-afford to have Cousins commit 2 -1st quarter fouls or 3- 1st half fouls. That's half of the battle. Cousins' last game defines him well as a player.
He had 22 points, 18 rebounds, 3 assists, and 2 steals on 9 of 28 shooting from the field with 4 fouls. With DeMarcus Cousins, he need's to improve his level of discipline and he can be one of the greats.
Golden State is going in the wrong direction since the Ellis trade and no matter how many 20 point, 10 rebound performances that David Lee put's up, they're going to have a difficult time. Take the Kings and the points.
Saturday night NBA picks: Sacramento +2.5