3 First-Round matchups that could be disastrous for the Kings

New Orleans Pelicans v Sacramento Kings: Quarterfinals - 2023 NBA In-Season Tournament
New Orleans Pelicans v Sacramento Kings: Quarterfinals - 2023 NBA In-Season Tournament / Thearon W. Henderson/GettyImages
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1. The LA Clippers

The LA Clippers are filled to the brim with big names. James Harden, Paul George, Kawhi Leonard, and Russell Westbrook are all battle-tested veterans. They share two MVPs, two Finals MVPs, two Defensive Player of the Year awards, and countless All-Star appearances between them. 

For a relatively young team with little playoff experience that is a postseason nightmare. Struggling with all their firepower, size, and veteran talent, the Kings lost two of the three regular-season games they played against the Clippers so far. 

The last time those two teams met, the Kings got a convincing win, but Paul George didn’t play, and the game did not necessarily create much hope for a potential postseason matchup. Beating the Clippers once in the regular season is one thing. Getting the better of them in a seven-game series is a whole other challenge. 

The Clippers’ main guys have been incredibly healthy this season, and Tyronne Lue is a great coach. They can certainly take their game to another level in the playoffs, and the Kings do not want to be on the opposing end. 

Right now, the Clippers are in fourth place in the West, still a bit behind the Timberwolves. It is still possible that LA claims the third seed while the Kings stay in sixth, making this a possible first-round matchup. 

That might lead to a short postseason run for the Kings, so Sacramento fans should all root for the Timberwolves to win some games and hold on to their spot while the Kings secure sixth place. Minnesota cannot be taken lightly in the playoffs, but their own youth and certain lack of postseason experience make it a much more favorable matchup, especially if Karl-Anthony Towns is still out.