Preview & Chat: The Sacramento Kings

Kurt —  April 18, 2007

Phoenix or Dallas. Win tonight and it’s the Suns this weekend, lose (and Golden State wins in Portland) and it’s Dallas.

I don’t think the Lakers can look at it that way — after the ugliness of the last month they need to win because they need to build momentum and confidence. The Lakers do not gain some incredible match up advantage facing one of the top two teams over the other, for the Lakers to bother either they are going to have to play much better. And that is what starts tonight.

Who plays? After the first half against Seattle, and with the Suns and Nash on the horizon, is there really any question that Farmar starts over Smush? And I might limit Kwame’s minutes a little, but he has got to start as well. The Lakers are not in the Dallas position of resting their stars, this unit needs to play together.

What the Lakers face tonight. According to Tom Ziller (he of Sactown Royalty and Fanhouse), you will not see any Brad Miller tonight (not sure Kings fans saw much of him all season). You will see Bibby, Kevin Martin and Ron Artest to start the game. But in the fourth quarter expect to see the King kids — Quincy Douby, Francisco Garcia, John Salmons.

But before you relax, remember that those are some talented kids who play very hard in their limited minutes. Just ask the Clippers.

Kareem Turns 60…. and a bunch of other fun numbers with the Captain (thanks to gatinho for the link).

Don’t look West. Some out there seem to think Jerry West is going to ride in on his white stallion and make some brilliant move to turn the Lakers into instant contenders. Um, remember that he never had that chummy a relationship with the Buss family and then lost a power struggle with Phil Jackson. Really, he wants to come back?

By the way, I think he’s done a good job in Memphis, despite this season’s record. He’s overhauled that roster into a young and athletic team, and after this year’s draft they will be younger and more athletic. This is a team poised to start getting better and be very good in three or four years. He has laid a very good foundation.