On Oct. 4, the Sacramento Kings will make the 90 minute flight south to take on the Los Angeles Lakers in their second preseason contest.
The Sacramento Kings will be taking on Lonzo Ball-less Lakers in their only meeting of the preseason. The Kings and Lakers split the season series last year, with each team taking home two wins.
This season figures to be much different , however. Sacramento is coming into the year with the likes of Marvin Bagley III, Harry Giles and Yogi Ferrell playing in their first year in Sacramento. A new and improved Skal Labissiere will also be present as will a motivated Willie Cauley-Stein.
The Los Angeles Lakers, on the other hand, completely overhauled their roster. The likes of Kyle Kuzma, Lonzo Ball and Brandon Ingram are still there, but L.A. managed to add a plethora of veterans in an attempt to make the playoffs this season.
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The Lakers new veterans include the likes Rajon Rondo, Javale McGee, Lance Stephenson, Michael Beasley and some 33-year-old player by the name of LeBron James.
It’s fair to say last season should have zero bearing on how this season plays out, but Thursday night’s contest should give fans a taste of what to expect in the regular season.
Aside from the rivalry storyline, there’s plenty for fans to watch for on Sacramento’s side. Perhaps most importantly is whether or not the Kings continue to commit to a faster play style. This was present on Tuesday’s game against the Suns, but the Kings need to make sure it’s prevalent in every game this season.
Fans should also keep a close on the play of Marvin Bagley, Harry Giles and Skal Labissiere. All three are critical to Sacramento’s success this season and only Harry Giles was moderately impressive. Giles posted a solid stat line of 14 points, 6 rebounds and 3 assists in 23 minutes. Bagley and Labissiere combined for 16 points, 3 rebounds and 2 assists in a total of 44 minutes.
While preseason play isn’t the end all be all, it would go a long way towards making the front office and fans confident in their future front-court players.
Of course, if the Sacramento Kings can get a win over Javale McGee and the Los Angeles Lakers, everything else might take a backseat for a night.