Rocky Widner

Game Preview: Kings (0-0) vs. Warriors (0-0)

by Steven Wilson
Writer, Digital

Sacramento opens the 2014-15 campaign against the in-state rival Golden State Warriors. Hear from newcomers Nik Stauskas and Ramon Sessions as they prepare to slow the “Dubs” potent backcourt.

Projected Starters

Kings Warriors
Darren Collison Stephen Curry
Ben McLemore Klay Thompson
Rudy Gay Draymond Green
Jason Thompson Harrison Barnes
DeMarcus Cousins Andrew Bogut

Broadcasts: TV – CSNCA
Comcast - 34 / 721
Dish - 441 / 9579
DirecTV - 698-1
AT&T - 768 / 1768
Radio – KHTK Sports 1140 AM

Channel Listings

Nik Talks Debut

2013-14 Head-to-Head


11/2/13 at Oracle Arena 12/1/13 at Sleep Train Arena 2/19/14 at Sleep Train Arena 4/4/14 at Sleep Train Arena
Kings 87
Warriors 98
McLemore 19pts, 4rebs, 2asts
Kings 113
Warriors 115
Cousins 24pts, 6rebs, 2stls
Kings 92
Warriors 101
Gay 16pts, 8rebs, 4asts
Kings 69
Warriors 102
Cousins 19pts, 11rebs


Last Time Out


10/24/14 at MGM Grand Garden Arena
Kings 93
Lakers 92
Cousins 21pts, 10rebs, 4asts

'Ray Vegas' Tips-In Game-Winner in Preseason Finale

In the fourth quarter against the Lakers on Friday night at the MGM Grand Garden Arena, Ray McCallum repeated his Las Vegas heroics, which earned his Summer League Championship game MVP honors. No. 3 led the Kings back from a double-digit deficit and tipped-in a game-winning layup as time expired.

Afterwards, Head Coach Michael Malone said the second-year point guard from Detroit will now be aptly known as “Ray Vegas.” McCallum scored 7 points in the final frame, while Nik Stauskas added 10 as the purple and black closed the fourth quarter on a 17-3 run to steal the 93-92 victory over the Lakers and finish the preseason with a 3-4 record.

In all, Sacramento outscored L.A. 29-16 in the final 12 minutes. DeMarcus Cousins paced the offense through the first three quarters with a game-high 21 points and earned his third consecutive double-double by adding 10 boards. Derrick Williams (14pts), Ramon Sessions (13pts) and Stauskas (10pts) all joined their center in double-figures.

30 Years In Sacramento

Tonight’s showdown with in-state rival Golden State will officially tip-off the Kings 30th-season in Sacramento. After purchasing the Kings in 1983, new owners, Joseph Benvenuti, Frank and Gregg Lukenbill, Bob A. Cook, Frank McCormick and Stephen H. Cippa petitioned the NBA Board of Governors to move the team from Kansas City, Mo. to Sacramento, which was approved April 16, 1985.

The Kings first game in Sacramento was played in front of a sellout crowd on October 25, 1985 against the Los Angeles Clippers. Over the next 29 seasons, Sacramento Kings fans became known as one of the most passionate fan bases in all of sports, creating a legendary home court advantage.

Wednesday’s contest against the Warriors will be the first of many commemorative moments this season as the organization plans to celebrate legendary moments, players and fans throughout the 2014-15 season. A limited edition 30th season T-shirt is on sale exclusively at www.KingsTeamStore.com.

3D Projection In Store for Home Opener

‘There’s Nothing Like It’

Before the opening tip of the 2013-14 season as the lights dimmed and the announcer began his introductions, goose bumps crept up Ben McLemore’s arms – the anticipation and jubilation overcame the 20-year old shooting guard.

“It felt like I was home,” said No. 23 about the arena’s energy. “I was very excited and happy to be playing in my first real NBA game. There was a ton of energy and enthusiasm – the fans are so crazy here and they showed me so much love and support. I was excited to go out there and perform.”

It didn’t take long for him to find the net – a special moment in any player’s career – and the anxiety faded.

“I had a few jitters,” he admitted. “My first points in the books came on a three against Denver – it felt so good. That’s when I realized I had made it to the NBA.”

As McLemore drained his first bucket, fans rose to their feet in unison to celebrate and cheer for their new rising star.

“Coming from a big program like Kansas and the ovations they gave me, I got the same treatment here,” said McLemore.

Now on the verge of his second season in the League, Sacramento’s young guard is primed for success and ready to prove doubters wrong.

“I’m ready to get this season going,” said McLemore. “I think this is the year for us to surprise a lot of people and teams.”

The Kings added many talented veterans this offseason including point guard Ramon Sessions, who says he never takes his opportunity for granted.

“This is my eighth year and I still get butterflies,” he admitted. “I’m just as excited as I was in my first year. Any time you get to start a season in the NBA, there’s nothing like that first game.”

“I can’t wait to see the crowd. I know they’re going to be excited. That first night, when they do the starting lineups, everything is a little different and it’s [even more special] because it’s a cross-town rivalry with Golden State.”

With an anticipated sell-out crowd inside Sleep Train Arena, the noise will be deafening, the energy will be palpable and the teams will be fired up for the start of a new season.

“There’s nothing like it,” concluded McLemore.

Breaking Down GSW

Led by the potent “Splash Brothers” – Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson – Golden State finished last season with 51 wins and the sixth-seed in the 2014 NBA Playoffs. Curry and Thompson have been the NBA's top 3-point shooting duo in each of the last two seasons draining 261 and 223 threes, respectively.

The Warriors backcourt duo leads a team that returns their top seven players in terms of minutes played from last season including swingman Andre Iguodala, forwards David Lee, Draymond Green and Harrison Barnes, and center Andrew Bogut.

“To play a challenging team like Golden State early is good, we know we have to improve our defense and you can’t ask for a better team than Golden State to help us with that,” said reserve point guard Ramon Sessions. “They’re a team we know that’s going to run the floor, shoot threes and we have to be ready.”

The Warriors led the NBA in scoring during exhibition action scoring 110 points per outing and finishing their 8-game slate with a 6-2record. First-year head coach Steve Kerr also witnessed his team finish first the League in shooting percentage (.513), assists (28.1 apg) and point differential (+11.0).

After dropping all four matchups to the blue and yellow last season, the Kings will need a strong performance from their defense to pull out the win.

“It’s definitely takes a team effort, but it starts with the guards,” said Sessions. “They have Curry and Klay Thompson – two dynamic guys in the backcourt. It’s going to take a team effort, it’s going to take all five of us to get stops.”

Injury Update

Warriors:

  • David Lee (strained left hamstring) is doubtful.
  • Shaun Livingston (recovery from right toe surgery) is out.
  • Brandon Rush (sacram stress reaction) is out.

Kings:

  • None
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