GameDay Preview: Cavs vs. Kings

Kyrie Irving
David Liam Kyle/NBAE/GettyImages

Game Summary

The Wine and Gold host the Sacramento Kings tonight at Quicken Loans Arena. Tipoff is at 7:00 p.m. ET.

Cleveland (18-33) won their second straight contest after defeating the Memphis Grizzlies 91-83 in overtime on Sunday. The Cavs outscored Memphis 13-5 in the extra frame to improve to 5-2 in OT this season.

The Cavaliers are averaging 105.3 points over the last four games.

Sacramento (17-34) enters tonight's contest in the midst of a four-game road trip. The Kings have started 0-2 on the trip after falling to the Washington Wizards 93-84 in their most recent matchup on Sunday.

Probable Starters/Injury Report* presented by Cleveland Clinic

Cleveland ClinicCavaliers: PG - Kyrie Irving, SG - Jarrett Jack, SF - Luol Deng
PF - Tristan Thompson, C - Anderson Varejao

Kings: PG - Isaiah Thomas, SG - Marcus Thorton, SF - Rudy Gay
PF - Jason Thompson, C - DeMarcus Cousins

Status Update: (Cavs) - Carrick Felix, (Left patellar Stress Fracture, Out), Luol Deng, (Illness, TBD)

(Kings) - None to Report

*Subject to change

Head-to-Head Matchup

Since the 2005-06 Season, the Cavaliers hold an 11-5 record against the Kings, including 5-3 at The Q over that stretch.

All-time, the Wine and Gold are 53-55 against the Kings (34-20 Home, 19-34 Road).

Key to the Game/Key Matchup

Defensive Intensity

Sacramento has a potent offense and are 14-5 when scoring 105+ points. The Wine and Gold surrendered 124 points in the two teams' last matchup on Jan. 12.

Needless to say, the Wine and Gold will need to bring intensity on the defensive end of the floor.

In Sunday’s win over Memphis, the Cavs held the Grizzlies to 33-86 (.384) shooting from the field, including 3-14 (.214) from the three-point line.

Cleveland is 7-1 this season when they hold opponents to under .400 shooting from the field.

Key Matchup

Backcourt Battle

Kings point guard Isaiah Thomas spearheads Sacramento's offense. The third-year guard from Washington has started the last 33 games and is averaging 21.7 ppg (.439 FG%, .363 3pt%, .876 FT%), 3.0 rpg, 6.9 apg, 1.3 spg, 2.8 tpg and 37.5 mpg. Thomas has scored 20 or more points in 24 of his 33 starts.

Controlling the Wine and Gold's pace will be the backcourt trio of Kyrie Irving, Dion Waiters and C.J. Miles.

Coming into tonight’s contest, Irving has topped 20 points in 11 of the last 13 games (since Jan. 15), averaging 22.1 points, 3.8 rebounds, 6.8 assists and 1.3 steals in 36.1 minutes per game over that stretch. He is also shooting .913 (63-69) from the free throw line over the last 13 games.

Waiters is leading the Cavs bench with an Eastern Conference-best 14.6 points per game as a reserve (3rd in NBA). His 11 20-point games as a reserve this season are the third-highest total in the NBA, behind Nick Young (16) and Jamal Crawford (14). In Sunday’s win, Waiters had a strong all-around game with 18 points, seven rebounds, six assists and two steals in 38 minutes off the bench.

Miles scored in double figures for the 4th straight game after finishing with 14 points in 24 minutes against Memphis on Sunday. Over the last four contests, Miles is averaging 17.3 points on .523 (23-44) shooting from the field, including .423 (11-26) from beyond the arc, 2.0 rebounds and 1.0 steal in 22.5 minutes per game.

Where to Catch the Action

TV: FOX Sports Ohio, NBATV, Radio: WTAM 1100, NBA League Pass Audio, XM & Sirius 218

For live in-game updates, follow @cavs, @CavsJoeG, @CavsFredMcLeod, @MrCavalier34, @CavsJMike and @chones22 on Twitter.

Be sure to check for Joe Gabriele's live in-game blog providing instant analysis and game notes. Plus, get into the discussion as die-hard Cavs fans talk about the game on CavFanatic's GameDay Thread.


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On Deck

After tonight's game, the Cavs will travel to Detroit on Wednesday to take on the Pistons for their final game heading into the All-Star break.