Tonight the Utah Jazz host the Sacramento Kings. Utah is playing their 4th game in 5 nights, and will be without their top three shooting guards on the depth chart in Alec Burks, Rodney Hood, and Joe Ingles. The Kings, losers of 9 of their last 10, will be without starting point guard Darren Collison. Right now the Kings are looking at other head coaches (posts by Sactown Royalty on the topic are found here and here). And the Jazz are letting bench guys torch them (post on that issue here). As our preview states, these two teams are in a downswing right now; but in the big picture, are more alike than not, and should get along with one another.
And yes, these are really small market teams with very insular fan bases:
Yes, these two teams have young stars-in-the-making as well, who are playing with them beyond their rookie contracts!
Yes. Two teams, similar teams. So similar that they are separated by 1.0 games in the Western Conference standings, and that Utah's previous head coach is their current head coach.
That closeness is nice, but let's be real. Both teams are hungry for a win right now.
- Ramon Sessions vs. Dante Exum
- Ben McLemore vs. Elijah Millsap
- Rudy Gay vs. Gordon Hayward
- Jason Thompson vs. Enes Kanter
- DeMarcus Cousins vs. Derrick Favors
- SAC -- Nik Stauskas, Derrick Williams, Carl Landry, Omri Casspi, Ray McCallum
- UTA -- Trey Burke, Rudy Gobert, Trevor Booker, Steve Novak, Firstname Lastname
- Darren Collison (OUT) -- Right hip flexor
- Alec Burks (OUT) -- out for season, shoulder
- Rodney Hood (OUT) -- gypsy curse of his feet
- Eric Moreland (OUT) -- out for season, needs more land.
Hope the Jazz can overcome fatigue and injury to get by a team that's struggling right now.